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Characters / Samurai Shodown - 2D Fighting Games

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Playable and fightable characters introduced in Samurai Shodown, Samurai Shodown II, Samurai Shodown III, Samurai Shodown IV, Samurai Shodown V, Samurai Shodown VI and Samurai Shodown (2019). There will be unmarked spoilers.

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Debuting in Samurai Shodown

Origin: Jōkamachi, Musashi Province, Japan flag note 
Weapon: Meitō Fugudoku note , a katana
Voiced by: note 

Our main hero who's out there mainly so he can get a kick out of fighting strong opponents. As a young man, he once lost a duel against Jubei, which encouraged him to hone his skills. After said loss, he studied at Nicotine’s dojo alongside Genjuro and ends up being chosen as the school's successor, much to Genjuro's dismay. The two remain bitter rivals ever since.

  • Accidental Hero: Due to him being a Boisterous Bruiser who's only in it for a good fight, he's not at all concerned with Saving the World. He views the main bad guys in the series simply as an increased challenge (or they target him in the first place), and he always wins, accidentally saving the world in the process.
  • The Alcoholic: You never see him in a game without a jug of sake. From II onwards, one of his specials involves whacking you with it too! This also works when he's unarmed as seen in 2019. "Alcoholic" is even the title of his SSIII theme.
  • Anime Hair: His hair is impossibly poofed out and styled in a ponytail reaching his lower back. It seems to get bigger in every game.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Usually evidenced in the backstories and endings of other characters, for example, Shizumaru and Takechiyo, where he takes both lads under his wing.
  • Blood Knight: Haohmaru is fueled by the sheer thrill of a good fight.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: A more idealistic version, as well as a rare main character who follows the trope.
  • Blow You Away: His traditional projectile, Senpuu Retsu Zan (Whirlwind Rending Slash), which sends out a compact spinning tornado which throws opponents high into the air on contact.
  • Character Title: The second game in the series is subtitled "Haohmaru's Hell Incident".
  • Death from Above: His Resshin Zan (Violent Quake Slash).
  • Guest Fighter: Appears in Soulcalibur VI's second season of DLC.
  • Hot-Blooded: Haohmaru is very loud and passionate about a good fight.
  • Hunk: Has broad shoulders as well as a nice muscular build, and a manly-man persona.
  • Loved I Not Honor More: He's dedicated entirely to fighting, as Oshizu (his lover) and later Charlotte come to learn. He acknowledges this in his ending in II where he apologizes to Oshizu for their romance taking a backseat over his love of fighting.
  • Master of None: Haohmaru can dish out extremely high damage under the right circumstances compared to most other characters, but he's fairly well-rounded otherwise and the fact that he isn't as specialized as other characters generally give him problems when pitted against them.
  • Meaningful Name: Haoh translates as "supreme ruler". The suffix "-maru" was common for Japanese samurai boys, and in fact three males from the series are named as such — Haohmaru, Shizumaru and Yashamaru.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Based on legendary samurai, Miyamoto Musashi.
  • Only One Name: Orphaned at a young age, he was named "Haohmaru" by an elderly neighbor, who encouraged him to explore the world, with his new name symbolizing him leaving his hometown of Jōkamachi. In contrast, almost all of his fellow Japanese characters are ascribed a surname, along with their given name — even the inhuman Gen-an (Shiranui)! However, he has always been simply "Haohmaru", and his surname remains a mystery.
  • The Protagonist: Akin to Ryu, he's involved purely for the thrill of fighting strong opponents, while naturally getting drawn in by the conflict surrounding him.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: He is the Red, while Ukyo is the Blue in the debut game; Haohmaru being the spirited and fight-happy one, while Ukyo is calm and hyperfocused.
  • Series Mascot: Along with Nakoruru, he appears in almost all the games (with the exception of the Nakoruru ADV game).
  • Shoryuken: His Kogetsuzan (Arc Moon Slash). It even has a Dash Attack variation of it called Shippuu Kogetsuzan (Hurricane Arc Moon Slash).
  • Shotoclone: He's got a projectile and a dragon punch-type anti-air, but they don't function as you'd expect. Nonetheless, he serves this role in the series for the most part, being a simple-to-understand Jack-of-All-Trades.
  • Shout-Out: He resembles Hyakkimaru from Dororo, another wandering swordmaster.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": "Haohmal". Some arcade stickers include the romanization "Haōmaru" (or "Haoumaru").
  • Spirited Competitor: Haohmaru enjoys fighting and will occasionally give friendly compliments to his opponents.
  • Unorthodox Sheathing: Upon winning, he stylishly throws his sword in the air, turns around as he spins the scabbard, then catches the blade in its sheath. He occasionally uses said skill as a Street Performer to supplement his income.

    Ukyo Tachibana
Weapon: a nameless, self-made shirasaya
Voiced by: note 

The series' pretty boy, master of Iaijutsu, and formerly the main rival of Haohmaru until Genjuro debuted. Ukyo is a complete Chick Magnet who attracts ladies wherever he goes. He suffers from tubercolosis and has a crush on a certain girl named Kei Odagiri, though he avoids developing further feelings for her due to his limited lifespan. He fights purely for Kei’s happiness, questing for rare flowers he hopes she’ll like.

  • Agent Peacock: A downplayed aspect after the first game, though he’s still relatively vain, somewhat pretentious, definitely a chick magnet, and very much a pretty-boy in all his appearances.
  • Anime Hair: He sports long, silky blue hair.
  • Attack Reflector: Ukyo's Tsubame Gaeshi is capable of reflecting projectiles to make up for a lack of one.
  • Badass Back: He usually faces backward when fighting, but if you ever see his face forward... let's just say you're dead.
  • Blade Spam: One of his special moves, Concealed Sabre Snowfall Slash, has him toss an apple in the air shortly before rapidly slashing at his opponent, whilst also cutting the apple to pieces.
  • Blood from the Mouth: Just so you know that he doesn't have long to live.
  • Chick Magnet: In almost all games, Ukyo excuses himself to his opponent and escapes off the screen when a posse of screaming girls chase after him.
  • Criss-Cross Attack: Ukyo has had a hyper move since IV in which he moves at lightning speed towards the opponent, passing through and behind him or her before sheathing his sword. A split second later, the opponent is sliced by various slashes and collapses to the ground.
  • Death by a Thousand Cuts: His Bust/Rasetsu Desperation Move from III and IV.
  • Demoted to Extra: Somewhat. In the first game, he was Haohmaru's true rival but when Genjuro arrived in the second game, he was never very relevant to the plot again.
  • Diagonal Cut: His fatality, which is also ludicrously fast.
  • Handicapped Badass: He fights despite suffering from tuberculosis.
  • Iaijutsu Practitioner: His fighting style, which complements his Badass Back stance. Ukyo is relatively defensive, relying on his lightning-quick sword strikes to punish his opponents' mistakes.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: His purpose for fighting — he quests purely to discover rare flowers for Kei Odagiri, his lover.
  • Ill Boy: He is ostensibly presented as suffering from tuberculosis, a deadly, incurable disease at the time the series is set, which is characterized by his pallid skin, pained expression, stooped stance, somewhat lank hair and of course, his hacking cough.
  • Incurable Cough of Death: A symptom of his tuberculosis — if left idle, or accessed on the character select screen, he collapses into hacking coughs. He even wretches a little.
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy: His long, blue hair is waist-length.
  • Meaningful Name: A tachibana is a native Japanese orange variety. "Ukyo" means "right side of the capital", and is a common name.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: If Haohmaru is Miyamoto Musashi, Ukyo is Sasaki Kojiro. He's even got Kojiro's Tsubame Gaeshi as a move.
  • The Rival: To Haohmaru... until Genjuro debuted in the second game.
  • Playing with Fire: When using Tsubame Gaeshi, his sword's blade bursts into flames.
  • Shout-Out: Takes inspiration from Tanosuke of Dororo and Lupin III's Ishikawa Goemon XIII.
  • Speed Echoes: As seen in his special move, Concealed Sabre Phantom Strike, where he does a series of swift, running slashes almost too fast to see.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: He and Kei are a mix of this and Courtly Love. With this couple, love definitely hurts, as he’s always unwilling to fully commit to her due to his incurable illness.
  • The Stoic: If there's one character who presents Visible Silence perfectly, it's him.
  • Strictly Formula: In each iteration of the series, his story follows a well-trodden path, which is emphasized in the 2019 game: Ukyo finally obtains a rare flower and presents it to Kei. Their happiness lasts only fleetingly because the flower withers and dies and so Ukyo sets out on yet another journey for another rare flower.
  • Sword Beam: The ground-based projectile used by his Bust/Rasetsu incarnations.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Apples, as seen since the first game. One of his special moves involves him tossing out an apple before slicing it (and the opponent) to pieces.
  • Tragic Hero: Ukyo is an honorable, poetic man who is condemned by a (then) incurable disease and knows that his lover Kei Odagiri will outlive him. Without ever committing to a relationship, since he knows it'll end tragically due to his short lifespan, Ukyo instead fights for Kei’s happiness, usually by presenting her with a rare flower — its fleeting bloom a symbol of their relationship.
  • Victory Is Boring: "The moment I drew my sword, the fight was over. Ho-hum"
  • Warrior Poet: The only two languages Ukyo speaks are Visible Silence and Haiku.

Origin: Kamuikotan, the Ainu Lands, Ezo flag note 
Weapon: Houtou Chichi-ushi note , a kodachi
Helpers: Mamahaha (Normal / Shura) / Shikuru (Rasetsu)
Voiced by: note 

The heroine of the series, most of the time concerning herself with defeating the Big Bad (compared to Haohmaru, who's in just for the fight itself). She is a priestess of the Ainu tribe who fights to protect Mother Nature herself. Usually, she abhors fighting, but will absolutely not shy away from combat in defense of the natural world and is very much nature’s champion. She's usually accompanied by her pet hawk, Mamahaha, and has a little sister named Rimururu.

For tropes detailing her other appearances, see Nakoruru: Ano Hito kara no Okurimono and The King of Fighters XIV.

  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: After overthrowing Mizuki at the end of II, she sacrifices herself to restore the natural balance and becomes one with the spirit of Nature. This allows her to appear in times of great crisis to dispel any force that would cause calamity upon the natural world. She can also appear outside of her own time, as shown in The King of Fighters XIV.
  • Badass Adorable: A top contender in video game history. Nakoruru's petite stature and sweet personality don't deter from the fact that she can kick copious amounts of ass, wielding her kodachi with deadly skill.
  • Badass Native: Nakoruru is a member of Hokkaido’s indigenous Ainu people and very much not a typical Yamato Japanese like the majority of the cast. The Ainu are analogous to Native Americans and are similarly portrayed in cultural references as being In Harmony with Nature.
  • Barrier Maiden: After her Heroic Sacrifice at the end of II, she becomes even more integral to the prevention of demonic forces from entering the natural world.
  • The Beast Master: Mamahaha, a hawk, and Shikuru, a wolf, both of which she can command to attack her opponent. Mamahaha can even pick her up in his claws, allowing her to float out of harm’s way — or unleash a deadly diving attack.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: A charming, sweet-natured young woman whose gentle character and appearance belies her deadly fighting prowess. In defense of the natural world, she'll go toe-to-toe with samurai, giant westerners, and even the odd Youkai.
  • Breakout Character: Appropriately as Samurai Shodown's mascot character, she has made the most appearances of anyone outside her home series, starting with the Game Boy version of The King of Fighters '95.
  • Catchphrase: Daishizen no oshioki desu! / This is Nature’s punishment! This phrase has accompanied Nakoruru in all her appearances. It seems to be her creed, and she can deliver it in cheerful or somber tones.
  • Celibate Heroine:
    • She's very aware of Galford's crush but is adamant she will never get into a relationship with him since her mission is her priority. She even tells him to not be hung up on her and live his own life before her Heroic Sacrifice.
    • The Nakoruru: Ano Hito kara no Okurimono game has her explaining that her priestess' duties don't allow her to think of or desire her own happiness, as it would be a distraction from her duty.
  • Clothing Damage: Killing Nakoruru with a strong attack will cause her clothes to be cut or torn off her body.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: Nakoruru appears in The King of Fighters XIV as a member of the "Another World" team along with two characters from a pair of SNK Playmore pachislots. This contrivance is due to the Big Bad creating a crack in space and time that affected her realm and, being a protector of Nature, she makes it her mission to assist by time-traveling to the future.
  • Fragile Speedster: Nakoruru is fast with her attacks and movement in general, but has a very low tolerance for damage and can be killed very easily — if you can catch her that is, as, in a game featuring actual ninjas, she's even faster than all of them.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Comes with the territory for an Ainu priestess of nature like her, and she can tame and befriend animals to fight for her. Her stages are usually filled with animals, and her endings in I and 2019 involve various forest creatures surrounding her affectionately.
  • Guest Fighter: Prior to her canonical participation in The King of Fighters XIV, Nakoruru appeared in the Game Boy version of The King of Fighters '95.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: A recurring theme for her — she does exhibit a normal, age-appropriate desire to have fun like any other young girl, but her dedication to nature trumps that every time.
  • Incorruptible Pure Pureness: Nakoruru absolutely cannot be swayed from her mission to protect nature. Not even her own desires to be a normal young girl deviate her.
  • Kill the Cutie: Despite being a sweet, beautiful girl, she is shown no mercy. Losing at the hands of the other warriors will result in Nakoruru being killed in extremely brutal ways, though in some installments, she's immune. Canonically, this happened in II via her Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Leitmotif: Her theme song is one of the few recurring tracks in the series.
  • Lethal Chef: In the Neo Geo DJ Station drama CD, Nakoruru stews together horrendously mismatched ingredients whilst going on about how they're all-natural, therefore bound to taste delicious together.
  • Mascot: Alongside Terry Bogard, she is SNK's other mascot.
  • Nature Heroine: All of her fights are dedicated to the protection of Mother Nature. This extends out-of-universe as well as SNK has used her and Terry as the faces of their nature conservation programs for children.
  • Nature Spirit: She ended up as one after II, following her Heroic Sacrifice, which excuses why she appears as youthful as ever long after her death — including a guest appearance in The King of Fighters.
  • Nice Girl: Of all the characters, she's amongst the most kindhearted and gentle.
  • Onee-sama: She's is one for Rimururu and Mikato.
  • Our Fairies Are Different: She takes the physical form of a fairy after her death in the Distant Finale and at the end of Nakoruru ADV in order to aid the other characters in their battle with the Big Bad.
  • Promoted to Playable: Shikuru and Mamahaha are playable in VI as a team.
  • Reluctant Warrior: If it were possible, she'd rather not fight, but protecting the natural world demands that she must.
  • Saving the World: Of all the characters, she exhibits the strongest sense of duty, and takes this duty seriously in her role as the protector of Nature.
  • Ship Tease: Despite her dedication to Nature, there is a lot of teasing about her and Galford. She is, however, a Chaste Hero, so she ends up having to let him down gently for the sake of her duty. Thankfully, Galford understands this and they usually remain good friends. Also seen in Nakoruru ADV with Yantamu.
  • Shout-Out: To the Ainu women (Oyaruru and Chiomapp) of The Dagger of Kamui.
  • Silk Hiding Steel: Despite her demure, priestly appearance, Nakoruru's fighting style is fast, frantic and relies on constant momentum to keep the pressure on.
  • Wall Jump: Capable of doing this, even though she's not a Ninja.
  • Wild Wilderness: Her homeland. At the time the series is set, the northern island of Ezo (literally "foreigner", known nowadays as Hokkaido) was a land apart, ungoverned by the Shogunate, and not officially part of what constituted Japan. Only in 1868 did it become incorporated and prior to that, it was viewed as a wild, inhospitable wilderness by the Yamato Japanese in the south.

    Galford D. Weller
Origin: San Francisco, California, New Spain flag note 
Helper: Poppy (Normal / Shura)
Voiced by: note 

American sailor-turned-McNinja, fighting for justice. He trained under the same master as Earthquake and completed his training to become a fully-fledged ninja. He is mostly accompanied by his pet dog Poppy, and is very much in love with Nakoruru, though she is way too focused on her mission protecting nature to focus on that. He can utilize plasma energy in the form of electric attacks that enhance his already impressive ninja skills.

  • The Beast Master: Some of his specials allows him to sic his huskie Poppy on opponents.
  • Big "NO!": He usually lets it out when he's beaten.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: An American who's big into justice and has a rambunctious enthusiasm for combat.
  • Canine Companion: His dog, Poppy, who can be used in some of his attacks.
  • Cutlass Between the Teeth: Galford's super has him perform a combination attack before throwing his sword into the air — Poppy then leaps up, grabs the sword in her mouth and spins into the opponent, before Galford ends the attack with a huge thunderbolt.
  • Dogged Nice Guy: Towards Nakoruru. During his ending in II, when Nakoruru's spirit apologizes to him and begs him to not grieve for her, he gallantly complies.
  • Eagleland: Mixed type. He's a boisterous American with a penchant for Gratuitous English, but he's also a positive character dedicated to his quest for justice and slaying evil.
  • Fun Personified: It’s rare to see him not smiling and he’s consistently upbeat and peppy.
  • Generation Xerox: Aside from the ninja paraphernalia, he is a justice lover just like his sheriff father before him.
  • Gratuitous English: He’s voiced in his native tongue, but this being a mid-90s SNK game, it’s pure Engrish. In 2019, Galford's English improves a lot, even if he sometimes still mixes in English phrases within Japanese sentences.
  • Highly Visible Ninja: Whilst Galford does know some ninja confusion techniques, like conjuring mirror-images of himself and the famous Ninja Log, he's still a Large Ham that fights alongside his equally boisterous dog and dresses in a bright blue ninja gi without a mask (with bright blond hair!), thus he stands out a mile, which fully differentiates him from Hanzo.
  • Justice Will Prevail: His maxim and entire reason for fighting.
  • Large Ham: "LET'S GO POPPY!"
  • Lead You Can Relate To: He represents the almost prerequisite American character in the series, in a cast mostly full of Japanese characters.
  • Leitmotif: His theme song, the bizarrely named "Tuna", is one of the few recurring tracks in the series. Interestingly his theme is basically Hanzo's theme but sped up and with added instrumentation, sounding more energetic and fun, befitting Galford himself.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Galford hits quite hard thanks to the nature of the game being focused on powerful single strikes, but as a ninja, he's quite agile as well (though somehow slightly slower than Nakoruru or her sister). For bonus points, he's also literally using lightning.
  • McNinja: He's dressed in what is almost an exact palette-swap of Hanzo, but in personality, he's as American as apple pie.
  • Meaningful Name: "Galford" is a town in Devon, England and is quite appropriately the site of an ancient Anglo-Saxon battle. "Weller" is also Anglo-Saxon, and refers to someone who lived near, or tended to a well or spring.
  • Mysterious Middle Initial: Full name: Galford D. Weller — no clues thus far on what the “D” stands for.
  • Pretty Boy: His youthful looks and blond hair definitely qualify him.
  • Promoted to Playable: Poppy is playable in V and VI.
  • The Runaway: He ran away from home, leaving his mother and his four older sisters. His father was killed by Draco.
  • Scarf of Asskicking: His most prized possession, a gift from his sensei Ayame.
  • Shock and Awe: He uses electricity to augment his already impressive ninja skills — "Plasma Blade!"
  • Shout-Out: Poppy is one to the comedy manga Doubutsu no Oishasan.
  • Spinning Piledriver: He uses the Izuna Drop variant as a command throw — he is a ninja, after all. In some games, even Poppy has the ability to use it!
  • Unrequited Love: He's head over heels for Nakoruru, but due to her being a celibate priestess, she could never reciprocate. However, they understand their shared duties and decide to remain Just Friends.
  • You Killed My Father: Draco was the culprit, as we finally learn in Sen.

    Hanzo Hattori
Origin: Dewa Sanzan, Dewa Province, Japan flag note 
Voiced by: note 

The legendary Ninja in the service of the Tokugawa shogunate and the enemy of anyone who opposes them. His manner is that of the classic ice-cold, super-serious ninja, though he is still good friends with Jubei and Yoshitora. Behind the scenes, he's very much a family man, and his wife and sons become entangled in many of the series' events.

  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: Humility isn't really his thing.
  • Badass Arm-Fold: Most of his artwork poses, including the 2019 render seen here, shows Hanzo folding his arms this way.
  • Casting a Shadow: Hanzo uses ninja magic to create a shadow ‘puddle’ from which he appears elsewhere on the stage to strike his opponent.
  • Cool Mask: Wears his signature ninja mask that comes with classic ninja headgear.
  • Creepy Crows: Seen on his stage in the first two games.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: He looks like a sinister, sly ninja but he's actually one of the good guys.
  • Dramatic Unmask: In II and 2019, Hanzo's match-winning animation has him unmask himself, fully revealing his face.
  • Friendly Rivalry: He occasionally spars with his friend Yagyu Jubei.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: The few times he's been seen without his mask, we can see a BIG scar across one of his eyes.
  • Hand Seals: Hanzo does the classic ninja hand seal for his round-winning animation and certain moves.
  • Hitman with a Heart Well, he is a ninja but he's also one of the good guys.
  • Interrupted Suicide: Was this close to committing Seppuku in his first ending, after he failed to save Shinzo from Amakusa. Luckily, Kanzo and his friends step in and tell him to become their mentor, which gives Hanzo a reason to carry on.
  • Invisibility: One of his moves allows him to turn invisible.
  • Legacy Character:
    • In the Distant Finale, one of his sons (widely believed to be Shinzo) takes over the name of Hattori Hanzo and becomes head of the clan. Might run in the whole family and apply to him too.
    • A couple of characters in The King of Fighters series (Nagase in Maximum Impact 2 and Bandeiras in XIV) inherit his ninjitsu fighting style and moves in the modern era.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Considering he and Galford used to be Moveset Clone, Hanzo retains his speed and striking power: Both are above average.
  • Meaningful Name: Hanzo appropriately means "half-hidden". Hattori is a venerable Japanese family name originally associated with silk-worm growers.
  • Moveset Clone: Galford was this to Hanzo at first, but quickly got Divergent Character Evolution in later games. The Iga Ninjas from Warriors Rage are straight examples though.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: Hanzo serves the Tokugawa Bakufu, performing the duties presented to him and protecting the Bakufu at all costs. This puts him at odds with Yashamaru, who views the Bakufu as utterly corrupted.
  • Ninja: The series' most clear-cut example, his design is that of a classic ninja, without any particularly unrealistic flourishes.
  • Ninja Log: He was probably amongst the very first (if not the first) fighting game characters to deploy this technique (known as kawarimi) in-game, where it's used as a fake-out when he gets hit (if the command is pressed in time, that is).
  • Ninja Run: In 2019, Hanzo's running animation has him running low to the ground with his arms behind his body, almost in an Airplane Arms style.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: He's based on the original Hattori Hanzo, an almost mythical samurai of the Sengoku era, credited with saving the life of Tokugawa Ieyasu and then helping him to become the ruler of united Japan. At the time the series is set, Ieyasu is already dead and his descendants are running the place, but then there's the Legacy Character trope at work, so he could be one of the Hattori Hanzos that came after the Ieyasu-era Hanzo (e.g. Hattori Masanari).
  • Papa Wolf: To Shinzo, and by extension to his pupil, Kanzo.
  • Playing with Fire: Though not his main repertoire, Hanzo possesses the ability to punch the ground to create flaming coils and fiery explosions, as shown in one of his moves, Bakuen Ryu.
  • Scarf of Asskicking: Sports a long, red muffler.
  • Smoke Out: Hanzo disappears in a puff of smoke and can teleport to various points around the stage (depending on the button input) and follow up with a sword strike.
  • Stock Ninja Weaponry: Apart from his ninjato, Hanzo also uses shurikens and bombs in some of his appearances.
  • The Stoic: He doesn't speak much, but if he does, his voice is grim and his speech minimal.
  • Throw Down the Bomblet: Hanzo's super move in 2019 begins with him performing an Izuna Drop before throwing down multiple bombs at his opponent and leaping out of the blast radius, whilst all of his bombs explode behind him.

    Jubei Yagyu
Origin: Yagyū no Sato, Tosa Province, Japan flag note 
Voiced by: note 

Another legendary Samurai (mostly based on Mitsuyoshi), he is a hardened and experienced warrior who is utterly loyal to the Tokugawa shogunate. He also likes to see potential in younger warriors and encourages them to one day overcome him. Unlike his comrade in arms, Hanzo, Jubei is a more care-free man when off-duty and enjoys times of peace with a hearty laugh.

  • Alternate Reality Episode: Jubei is also the protagonist in Yagyu Kachou, an official side story set in an alternate reality where Samurai Shodown characters are placed in the modern world. In this story, he is a struggling "salaryman" (standard Japanese businessman) who has fallen on hard times. He's often picked on by various characters from the series, though Hanzo and Tam Tam are his closest friends.
  • Ambiguously Related: With 64's Yagyu Hanma.
  • Blade Spam: Jubei has a signature move where he uses both of his swords to thrust in rapid succession.
  • Blind Obedience: Jubei is loyal to the Tokugawa Shogunate, even as a ronin — though some say his ronin status is a cover in order to execute missions given by the Shogunate.
  • Cool Old Guy: Outside of battle, Jubei is a very easygoing and friendly older man.
  • Counter-Attack: Jubei has a counter-attack that can block from low, medium, or high attacks and follow up with an attack for each direction.
  • Dual Wielding: With his daisho pair — an uchigatananote  and wakizashi.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Legend has it that Yagyū Jūbei had the use of only one eye and most legends state that he lost it in a sword sparring session when his father, Yagyū Munenori, struck him accidentally. Whilst portraits from Jubei's time portray him as having both eyes, and several authors present him as such, his classical "eyepatch" look remains the standard.
  • Handicapped Badass: Blind in one eye, but no less of a deadly warrior.
  • Jack-of-All-Stats: It's not just his character design that's grounded and robustly solid — he also has one of the most balanced, effective move-sets in the series, with a good balance between stamina, maneuverability, and range.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Especially when there's two of them.
  • Meaningful Name: His given name, Jubei, means "10th protector".
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Based on Yagyu Jubei, in particular the most famous one: Mitsuyoshi. In his bio, his idol is noted to be his father, Munenori, another real-life, legendary samurai.
  • Old Master: As Haohmaru's mentor and the sword instructor for Yoshitora.
  • Rated M for Manly: A gruff, older man in a series with plenty of younger, more classically handsome men.
  • Samurai: Seems obvious, but along with Haohmaru, Ukyo, Genjuro, and Yashamaru, he's the most clear-cut example in the series.
  • Samurai Ponytail: Sports a fairly normal top-knot in a game where Anime Hair runs riot.
  • Shout-Out: A blatant one to Yagyu Jubei of the 1981 Makai Tenshô film adaptation.
  • Signature Laugh: Jubei's winning round animation has him cross his arms and do his signature big proud laugh.
  • Sword Beam: Jubei can create a ground wave from his swords as his projectile moves and creates a bigger one for both of his super moves.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: He is shown to enjoy dango, Japanese sweet dumplings.

Origin: Texas, New Spain flag note 
Voiced by: note 

Overly obese Texan McNinja. Earthquake used to learn under Galford's sensei Ayame, but quit early due to his greed. He later becomes a bandit, leading his gang to cause mischief here and there. He's always working for the bad guys, but later enters Makai, lured by the treasures there and vanishes, never to be heard of again.

  • Adapted Out: Earthquake is the only character who was cut from the Sega Genesis port of the first game due to the fact that his sprite was too big for the Genesis cartridge's ROM to handle. This also extends to the enhanced Sega CD port of the first game as well, even though the Sega CD itself should've easily been able to hold both Earthquake and his stage via the much larger ROM capacity.
  • Ass Kicks You: Or more like, 'Ass Stomps You'.
  • Acrofatic: Look at this guy, would you ever guess that he's a ninja?
  • Bald of Evil: A bald, evil, notorious bandit.
  • Belly Flop Crushing: Has several moves that involve landing on his opponent belly-first. Given his enormous size, they're unsurprisingly devastating.
  • Benevolent Boss: Astoundingly. His ending in 2019 shows him treating his gang extremely well, throwing a huge feast for them after his victory, and making it clear that he regards all the wealth they've stolen as belonging to all of them equally.
  • Big Eater: Obviously. Even seen in one of his win-poses where he pulls out a giant turkey leg to munch on.
  • Breath Weapon: One of his super moves is a fire-breath attack.
  • The Cameo: Earthquake also appears in all SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighter Clash series and as one of the monsters in Akari Ichijo's super in NeoGeo Battle Coliseum.
  • Deceptive Disciple: He was a disciple of Kunoichi Ayame like Galford, but quit early due to his bad ties with the latter.
  • Den of Iniquity: His sadly canceled stage in 2019 was set in a ruined Texan saloon, with the spoils of his looting strewn all over the place.
  • Dumb Muscle: Earthquake is evil, driven by money, and certainly not smart. Best seen in his II ending where he goes to Makai (the demon world) lured by the offer of money, only to get trapped there (seemingly) forever.
  • Eagleland: Type B, though toned down. He’s obese, loud, brash and vulgar, but doesn't flaunt his American status enough — at the time, of course, Texas was part of New Spain, but still.
  • Epic Flail: He wields a giant kusarigama as his weapon of choice — essentially a length of chain with a weight at one end and a viciously sharp sickle at the other.
  • Evil Duo: With Gen-An, often paired by fans as the Chang and Choi of the series (seen together in Genjuro's IV and Gaira's V endings.)
  • Evil Laugh: Earthquake is fond of a villainous cackle.
  • Everything Is Big in Texas: Himself included — he hails from what was then Spanish Texas, and is positively enormous, dwarfing all other characters in the series through sheer height and girth.
  • Facial Markings: Earthquake has tattoos or face paint in the shape of blue flames around his eyes.
  • Fartillery: His horrific kick grab in the first two games, where he plants the opponent's face between his butt-cheeks and emits a noxious cloud of brown gas that sends them flying.
  • Fat Bastard: Enormous, grossly overweight, and unambiguously one of the bad guys.
  • The Giant: His bio pegs him at 9’4” — making him amongst the tallest (human) characters in the fighting game genre (if not the tallest).
  • Gonk: He’s a hideous giant toad of a man and his appearance has given him a complex, with him worrying that “(my) face looks like an old woman's".
  • Highly Visible Ninja: Apart from his HUGE size, his red/neon-pink clothes don't help him blend in. At all.
  • Jiggle Physics: In 2019, he has an absurdly large stomach that wobbles about as he moves around.
  • McNinja: Like Galford, he's from America, in this case, Texas. Starting from II, he also uses ninja tricks like mirror-images or the Ninja Log technique.
  • Mighty Glacier: The slow-but-strong character from the first two games, as well as the biggest character sprite by far — he’s so large that he can't be thrown by an opponent.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed:
    • Earthquake is likely an homage to Mr. Pogo, a wrestler mostly prominent in The '90s. Mr. Pogo was overweight and noted for his cruelty, carrying a kusarigama into the ring and breathing fire at his opponents. In addition, Mr. Pogo wore jagged blue face-paint patterns, was considered a greedy mercantile wrestler who was only interested in money and got his claim to fame wrestling as a villainous ninja in Texas wrestling shows.
    • He's also, most likely, a reference to Earthquake, his namesake, who was also most notable for being a very, very large man at just over 2 metres tall.
  • Only in It for the Money: Earthquake's main reason for everything he does is money, including being recruited by Mizuki.
  • Post-Stress Overeating: His weight ballooned to a gargantuan 1380 pounds due to over-eating after he had his heartbroken, aged 19.
  • Recoil Boost: His Earth Crisis super-special move involves him using his fire breath to launch himself into the air like a rocket before doing a spinning belly flop onto his opponent.
  • The Rival: Galford. There’s even a Continuity Nod upon his return in VI when he claims to have forgotten about him. And in 2019, Galford chastises Earthquake for using their master's techniques for evil purposes.
  • Shout-Out: Resembles the common giant mooks of Hokuto no Ken, especially Mr. Heart.
  • Spin Attack: Earthquake's signature move in which he spins with his kusarigama, debuting as a straight move and later having variants like being accessible in the air, after a teleport, and even grabbing an enemy to spin them.
  • Start My Own: Earthquake formed his own bandit gang, with henchmen who loyally follow him everywhere (including to Makai).
  • Stout Strength: His gigantic size does come with great strength, and characters like Nakoruru must chip away at his health before bringing him down.

    Charlotte Christine de Colde
Origin: Paris, Kingdom of France flag note 
Weapon: La Roche note , an épée
Voiced by: note 

A French fencer who caught word of a "series of calamities" with no natural pretenses. She leaves her Paris home to investigate and ends up traveling to Japan in order to do battle with Amakusa, who she finds to be the source of the evil plaguing her home country. Afterward, she returns home to take part in the French Revolution, but always returns to Japan any time the forces of evil reappear.

  • All Love Is Unrequited: Her crush on Haohmaru — he only has eyes for Oshizu.
  • Battle Ballgown: She's quite modestly dressed for a fighting-game female, and sports a long, tunic-like skirt with her armor-plate.
  • Big Fancy House: Charlotte's stages are all set in the palatial salon of her family seat in Paris, complete with chequerboard flooring, elegant candelabras, and huge allegorical paintings. A twinkling pianoforte theme accompanies the battle.
  • Blue Blood: She's stated to be a minor noble, so her full title could well be Chevaleresse de Colde ("Lady de Colde"), though she prefers the company of commoners.
  • Combat Stilettos: Mostly in evidence in her 2019 outfit, where her boots’ heels are easily 6 inches.
  • Everyone Looks Sexier if French: She was designed so as to be the 'sexy', mature Foil to the cuter Nakoruru, although most of her sexiness was covered with her Battle Ballgown.
  • Fanservice Pack: Her updated design for 2019 is this in spades. Unlike the original games, where she had a more masculine design to invoke the Rose of Versailles reference, in the reboot she is much more open about her femininity, sporting more form-fitting, high-class attire and tying her long hair into a ponytail.
  • Gorgeous Gaijin: The series’ original western woman — her theme in the first game is even titled "Foreign Woman" — and she exhibits the almost prerequisite long blonde hair and statuesque height.
  • Gratuitous French: Has gone from ear-grating to amusing to just short of decent.
    • One foppish looking NPC in her V intro takes it a couple of dozen steps further, to the utter hilarity of many a French fan.
    "Juéé t'êêêêêm Madeumwazzêêêll" (“I love you, Miss”)
    • For 2019, her trailer was first released in French (to the delight of French fans) and she now bids her opponent a cheerily smug “adieu” after skewering them with her super.
  • Haughty "Hmph": In keeping with her slightly disdainful personality, she does this when interacting with most opponents.
  • Important Haircut: When she sees that Haohmaru does love Oshizu, despite his dedication to fighting, she decides to get over it and starts by cutting her long hair with her rapier.
  • Instant Messenger Pigeon: Her method of staying in contact with France while she's on her travels is via Pierre, a messenger pigeon named after her First Love.
  • Iron Lady: She's a proud woman, utterly no-nonsense in manner, and dedicated entirely to protecting her countrymen.
  • Lady of War: A sophisticated, classically beautiful woman who elegantly wields an épée in combat.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Her name is a direct reference (albeit in a mis-romanised manner) to Charlotte de Corday, who was an activist during the French Revolution and sent to the guillotine.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: She breaks into a haughty, mocking laugh when she wins a round.
  • Patriotic Fervor: Following the events of the first game, she returns to France to participate in the French Revolution, despite her noble status.
  • Royal Rapier: She wields an épée in combat, which compliments her elegant, French character.
  • Shotoclone: She has a projectile, a "dragon punch" style rising slash, and an attack that carries her forward — essentially the full shoto trio. She's also one of the easiest characters to pick up, play, and do well with.
  • Shout-Out: Her look is very much inspired by Oscar de Jarjayes from The Rose of Versailles (without the cross-dressing tendencies.)
  • Signature Sound Effect: In 2019, Charlotte's weapon has its own distinct sound effect to convey the "piercing" attack of a rapier, versus the universal shredding/slicing sounds accompanying the attacks of all other blade-carrying fighters.
  • Something About a Rose: Like many European characters in the fighting game genre, she has a penchant for roses and the flower is featured in the design of her armor and her stage’s propping, as well as her win-pose, where she serenely holds a rose to her face.
  • Statuesque Stunner: She stands at an amazonian height of 6' — huge for a woman of her time.

    Tam Tam
Origin: Green Hell Village, Maya Territory, Mesoamerica flag note 
Voiced by: note 

Hero of the Green Hell tribe and protector of the Tanjil and Palenke Stones, both of which prevent Ambrosia entering the world. He was actually slain by Gaoh in the past, but one of his fellow tribesmen discovered his mask and was resurrected as a new Tam Tam. Later gets turned into a chimp after his little sister Cham Cham loses the Tanjil Stone.

  • Ambiguously Brown: He sports a bronzed skin-tone, which is relatively suitable as he’s a native Mesoamerican.
  • As Long as It Sounds Foreign: “Tam Tam” is not a name encountered in Maya, Inca or Aztec cultures and was probably chosen primarily because it sounds “jungly” and primitive.
  • Baleful Polymorph: His ending in IV reveals that he has been cursed and now lives as his sister’s chimp, Paku-Paku — a punishment meted out over her losing the sacred Tanjil Stone.
  • The Big Guy: Tam Tam towers over everyone in the game, but either his fighting style or him being possessed by the mask causes him to walk and fight in an awkward "crab-like" crouching pose.
  • Breath Weapon: He can leap up and breathe fire in great exploding globules.
  • Confusion Fu: Tam Tam's stance keeps him low to the ground, he throws skulls, fireballs, and totem poles from unusual angles and performs low-hitting pseudo-Hurricane Kicks by spinning on his fingertips.
  • Hot-Blooded: One of his win quotes speaks for itself: "My boiling blood bubbles for battle!"
  • Human Sacrifice: His super in 2019 evokes this, and features the opponent being thrust skyward and shredded by a towering tribal totem whilst a group of his fellow masked tribesman leap around it manically.
  • Hulk Speak: In 2019, his dialogue is heavily accented and he speaks slowly and deliberately, which lends him a primitive quality, unlike his fellow cast members.
  • Legacy Character: After he’s killed by Gaoh in V (chronologically the first game), a fellow Green Hell villager discovers his mask and takes up the mantle of a new “Tam Tam”.
  • Lost Tribe: At the time the series is set (1786+), the Spanish conquest had stripped away most of the defining features of Maya civilization. However, many Maya villages (like Green Hell) remained remote from Spanish colonial authority, and for the most part, continued to manage their own affairs.
  • Machete Mayhem: He wields a giant-sized machete.
  • Man Bites Man: Since IV, he has had a horrific command-throw called the "Gaburu Gaburu" (which sounds uncomfortably similar to "gobble gobble"). He grabs the opponent, then thankfully turns his back to the camera and proceeds to bite chunks out of them. He then cackles as blood runs down his hands.
  • Mask Power: His mask is in some way magical, as its innate power is enough to reincarnate him when worn by another villager.
  • Mayincatec: Zigzagged -
    • Originally he's presented as an Inca as he hails from South America, as seen on the first game’s map screen, where his village of “Green Hell” is located in the upper region of the continent and also via the original arcade flyers released for the series’ debut, which unambiguously presented him as an “Incan Warrior”.
    • In 2019 there has been a retcon, as the world-map now pinpoints his village of Green Hell as being in Mesoamerica, labeling the land “Maya” — so it appears he’s a Maya warrior after all.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: He's the greatest warrior and hero of his village, Green Hell. Hearing from the village elders that their sacred artifact is missing, he takes the responsibility of retrieving the stolen treasure, the mysterious jewel known as the "Palenke Stone".
  • Vocal Dissonance: For such a huge guy, his voice is screechy and high-pitched. Subverted in 2019, where his voice is deep yet he is still able to belt out his signature high-pitched victory screech.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Sports only a collar and jewelry on his upper half.
  • Wild Man: He’s the series’ attempt to add a little diversity to the roster in his capacity as a tribal Mesoamerican warrior in a game dominated by Japanese characters.

    Kyoshiro Senryo
Weapon: Sewa Nyōbō note , a naginata
Voiced by: note 

A Kabuki actor who thinks Kabuki dancing is a Serious Business. The evil presence encountered throughout the series kept disturbing his performances, so he usually fights to preserve his dancing stage.

  • Anime Hair: His huge, bouffant mane is based on traditional Kabuki wigs.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: He hops on one foot whilst in his idle pose, which must be quite tiring after a while, though it doesn't affect his fighting prowess — it's more of an aesthetic tick in line with his overall theatricality.
  • Blade on a Stick: Wields a naginata named "Caring Wife" — a weapon traditionally wielded by women.
  • Breath Weapon: In a nod to his highly theatrical, performance-based fighting style, one of his moves involves him breathing fire at his opponents.
  • Comically Cross-Eyed: He does this in 2019 as part of his Kabuki poses.
  • Dance Battler: He's an accomplished Kabuki actor, and uses his theatrical movement skills in battle.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: From III onwards — prior to that, he sported geta sandals.
  • Fighting Clown: Even with his new design from III onward, Kyoshiro not only evokes the traditional appearance of a clown but is also very comedic and jovial in combat, from his strange poses to the fact that he can summon mini tidal waves and giant frogs.
  • Frog Ninja: He's able to summon a giant frog that comes up through the stage floor to savage the opponent, and although he isn't a ninja, this suits his overall weirdness and sense of theatre.
  • Kabuki Sounds: As expected from one who specializes in the art of Kabuki — Yoo~ooh!
  • Large Ham: This is Kabuki after all, where expressions, gestures, and speech-patterns are all highly stylized. It's self-acknowledged too, as seen when he defeats his palette-swapped counterpart, he calls him a "ham".
  • Making a Splash: Kyoshiro has the ability to manifest small waves of water with a swipe of his naginata, which surge along the ground to hit low.
  • Meaningful Name: "Senryō" denotes a high salary referring to star actors. "Kyōshi" is translated as "a death marked by madness". Also, the name of his weapon, "Caring Wife", is a stock Kabuki role.
  • Overly Long Tongue: In 2019, his prologue art shows him sticking out his long tongue, which fits with his overall bizarre nature.
  • Paper Fan of Doom: In some games, Kyoshiro's projectiles are paper fans inducted with fire.
  • Playing with Fire: Apart of the aforementioned paper fans, a variety of his moves burn the opponent — in some games, he even has a Breath Weapon. He can also do a flaming kick in which he uses his naginata to sling-shot himself at the opponent.
  • Race Fetish: He's got a penchant for busty white women, as seen in his bio where under the "ideal mate" section, he lists: "Western women with measurements Japanese couldn't begin to fathom." Strangely, he's never interacted flirtatiously with Charlotte, despite her fitting the bill.
  • Serious Business: His win-quote sums up how seriously he takes his art-form of choice; "(Kabuki is) a method of acting that is a matter of life or death."
  • Spin Attack: Certain moves and one of Kyoshiro's super moves involves him spinning really fast with his naginata outstretched in a tornado-like fashion.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In the first game and II, his sprite suggests something of a comedic, faintly ridiculous character. But come III, he sports a far stronger look via a powerful, almost animalistic stance, wild leonine hair, and a sleeker costume.

    Wan Fu
Origin: Xi'an, Qing Empire flag note 
Weapon (I / Sen): Zanniku Daibocho note , a dao
Weapon (II / 2019): Bokuniku Daisekichu note , a stone pillar
Weapon (VI): Bakuniku Daitekkyu note , a chuí
Voiced by: note 

A Chinese Warlord out to unify his nation. Despite this seemingly dictatorial idea, he is merely a good guy trying to make best of the situation, and protect his land, which leads him to fight off the evil forces threatening the Qing Empire.

In 2019 which takes place before the first game, he hears of a strong warrior from a distant land and heads to Japan in order to potentially recruit them for his army.

  • Ass Kicks You: As seen during one of his standing kicks, one jumping kick, and one of his grabs.
  • BFS: His weapon in the first game.
  • Big "NO!": In his ending in 2019, he lets out one when his weapon breaks in half.
  • Blue Blood: He's a general of the Qing Dynasty and his bio notes that he descends from the Han Imperial Family, the ancient Dynasty which ruled China from 206 BC to 220 AD.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: Probably even more than Haohmaru.
  • Bowdlerise: His original bio in I noted that he "is wandering around the world searching for a "true Han" to defeat the "foreign race" empire (the Qing Empire) and restore the ethnic Han Empire" — a less altruistic mission than that which is noted in both later, and international materials (which simply mention him unifying China).
  • Call-Forward: In his 2019 ending, his stone pillar finally gives out from all the battles he's fought thus far, and it breaks in half — which is why he uses a dao in the first game.
  • Chinese People: The series' sole Chinese rep until V. However, he actually represents something of an interesting anomaly in the fighting game genre, where the Chinese characters are almost always represented by either the acrobatic, Qi Pao-clad Anime Chinese Girl, the straight-up Bruce Lee Clone, or the Old Master (at least 50 years old +) sporting a long beard. As a portly, boisterous warlord, he represents a refreshingly different approach.
  • Downloadable Content: He returns to the series in 2019 as part of the first season of DLC characters, and wields an updated version of his stone pillar from II.
  • Hot-Blooded: At least in the first game, his Rage gauge fills up faster than anyone else's, and stays maxed out for the longest as well.
  • It Was a Gift: The stone pillar he wields was given to him by the Emperor himself.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He usually acts like a jerkass and sometimes a Casanova Wannabe, but he has a good heart and fights for his people.
  • Lightning Bruiser: For a big guy, he can cover the screen faster than some of the more slightly built characters.
  • Meaningful Name: Translates as "Tiger King".
  • No Fourth Wall: He is one of the few characters in the series to have a "joke" ending that breaks the fourth wall. Comically, he admits to the player that "there is no ending to [his] story".
  • Progressively Prettier: Zigzagged. In the first game, his physique can be described as flabby. In the second game, he sported an impressive six-pack. Come SSVI, his belly is more prominent than ever, and in 2019, he's back to his ripped (though still heavy-set) look from the second game.
  • Stout Strength: In the first game and VI, he sports a noticeable gut (though not to the same extent as Earthquake) and is still strong enough to use a temple pillar as a makeshift weapon (albeit not in the same game).
  • Take Over the World: Take Over China in his case, though for fairly gallant reasons.
  • Use Your Head: In II, he gains a move which involves repeatedly slamming his head into his stone pillar to fill his rage gauge at the cost of some of his Health.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: His primary costume is a simple loincloth.

    Gen-an Shiranui
Origin: Onigami Island, Japan flag 
Weapon: Azami note , a clawed gauntlet
Voiced by: note 

An..uh... goblin-like monster who claims to be 'The King of Demons' and does his best to do evil here and there, despite being quite inept at it. He has a human-seeming wife named Azami, who bore him a brood of kids...WHO LOOK LIKE HIM. Eventually, due to Azami’s wishes, Gen-An stops fighting and settles down to the role of a family man/goblin.

  • Amazing Technicolor Population: As he’s a "goblin", his skin is light green.
  • Ambiguously Related: With Mai Shiranui. Since SNK never stated whether they are actually related or not, it is unclear if Gen-An is an ancestor of Mai's or it's simply a coincidence between their surnames.
  • Anti-Villain: For all his boasts of being a Demon King, in the end, Gen-An is just a family man concerned with the wellbeing of his wife and goblin brood.
  • The Artifact: According to the series' creator, Yasushi Adachi, the concept was originally to create an action game featuring various monsters. Ultimately it was felt that a fighting game with ninjas and samurai, which represented distinctly Japanese characters, would do better commercially than just monsters, so the concept changed accordingly and the only “survivor” of those original monsters was Gen-an.
  • Back from the Dead: Killed by Ayame after the first game, Gen-An was revived by Mizuki in the second to serve Ambrosia.
  • Bald of Evil: Supports his 'evil goblin' persona.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: His blade-gauntlet.
  • Breath Weapon: His poison breath, which in the first games makes the opponent dizzy, though they instantly fall down, so he can't continue with another attack.
  • The Cameo: Gen-An also appears as part of character endings in IV and V (Genjuro and Gaira, respectively), as part of a background in Samurai Shodown! (first of Neo Geo Pocket SS games and port of IV) and as one of the monsters in Akari Ichijou's super move in NeoGeo Battle Coliseum.
  • Cartoon Creature: In a series that debuted with a cast of fairly realistic human characters (some even based on real-life, historical figures), he stands out as a completely fantasy-based, goblinoid creature.
  • Cultural Cross-Reference: His whole design is based on Western depictions of goblins, as in Dungeons & Dragons.
  • Dragon with an Agenda: Even after being revived and recruited by Ambrosia, Gen-An's plans to be the "Evil King" are intact.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Although he’s evil, Gen-An has a lovely wife who loves him, evil or not, and children who love him too — and he loves them all back as well, being a good husband and father.
  • Evil Duo: With Earthquake in a few characters' endings, and they're often paired by fans as the Choi and Chang of the series.
  • Evil Laugh: An unsettling cackle, to be specific.
  • Family Man: Despite being an evil minion, Gen-An is loyal to his own family (his wife and children.)
  • Gonk: One of the series' ugliest character by far, it’s not even clear just what this guy actually is. He held the 'ugliest' title for a long time until Kusaregedo was introduced and took his crown.
  • Grappling-Hook Pistol: His claw is attached to a hidden chain, so he can shoot it out then pull opponents towards him. He was one of the first fighting game characters able to do this, along with Scorpion.
  • Green and Mean: He's a goblinoid demi-human, and has bright slime-green skin to boot.
  • Humanoid Abomination: Is he a goblin? A tengu? A demon? A hideous human?...he’s been tentatively labeled all four, but it’s always left ambiguous.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: A self-proclaimed "Demon King" with a squeaky voice and in the end too much of a Family Man to be taken truly seriously as a force of evil.
  • Interspecies Romance: He's Ambiguously Human, but his wife Azami is much more typically human-looking, although she does sport large, pointed ears as he does.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: A pot of what appears to be dead people simmers away in the background of his stage.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • "Gen-an" translates as "phantom hermit", and a shiranui is an atmospheric ghost light.
    • His family all have sightly creepy names too. His wife Azami's name means "thistle" (a spiky plant) and his children's names are all lowly, underground-themed; Zakuro ("pomegranate" — a fruit associated with the underworld), Mukuro ("mole" — a burrowing animal) and Hedora (literally "gutter", the poor kid!).
  • Poisonous Person: His breath weapon, which stuns the opponent momentarily.
  • Shout-Out:
    • His clawed-glove weapon is directly inspired by Freddy Krueger.
    • His stage in II features a Xenomorph being cooked inside a giant metal cauldron by other "goblins".
  • Small Name, Big Ego: He is constantly proclaiming himself 'The Demon King'.
  • Smug Snake: He's the supremely confident yet blundering fool of the series. Despite declaring himself a 'king', he's really a just minion amongst the masses and a show of force will cause him to swiftly back off.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Is it Genan, Gen An, Gen-an or Gen-An?
  • Spin Attack: One of his moves and his eventual super involves spinning.
  • This Is a Drill: In I, Gen-An's punch throw has him use his claw-like a drill. In II this becomes his Desperation Move.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Gen-an's wife Azami is an attractive humanoid. It's even jokingly suggested he might be an ancestor of Mai Shiranui, though they really have no relation beyond their shared surname.
  • Wolverine Claws: He wields a horrific-looking clawed glove, which he dramatically snaps closed as his idle animation cycles.

    Shiro Tokisada Amakusa
Weapon: Gadamā no Hōju note , a magic orb
Voiced by: note 

Based on the Christian rebel of the same name, he crossed the Despair Event Horizon when he was sentenced to death, and made a pact with Ambrosia as he was executed. Amakusa is then resurrected by Ambrosia using the body of Shinzo Hattori (one of Hanzo's sons). Amakusa's main plot involves him stealing the Palenke stone, which he intended to use to bring Ambrosia to the mortal world. Upon his resurrection in IV, his spirit splits into two halves: one good and one evil — Amakusa seeks his other half in order to regain his full power. His appearance in 2019 sheds light on what happened immediately after he was first resurrected, and how exactly he became the Big Bad of the first game.

  • Affably Evil: For his win quotes against certain opponents in 2019, he surprisingly seems to empathize with them and claims that he will save them through salvation or even recruit them into his services. Whether he means his words or not is up for debate, but he's fairly confident that his opponents will inhabitat in a world under his rule. As for anyone associated with the Tokugawa Shogunate, he shows no mercy.
  • Artificial Stupidity: SS1 Amakusa is extremely vulnerable to throws. All you have to do is walk up to him and throw him over and over again.
  • The Atoner: His good side, as explained in the intro above.
  • Back from the Dead: Twice.
  • The Bus Came Back: After 16 years since his last playable appearance, Amakusa makes his return as part of the 3rd Season Pass of 2019.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: Does he EVER! So much that many who first encountered him thought he was a woman at first, due to his feminine features, talon-like fingernails, lipstick, and elaborate kimono.
  • Enemy Without: Aku Amakusa
  • Energy Ball: His iconic orb. He wields an energy weapon named Gadamā no Hōju. He represents the first fighting game character to wield an orb-like weapon in combat — characters like Viola and Menat debuted at least eighteen years after he did.
  • Evil Is Hammy: In games where he is a villain, he chews the scenery like no tomorrow and sounds like he's constantly on the verge of breaking out into maniacal laughter at any given moment. By contrast, when not under Ambrosia's influence, he's a Cold Ham.
  • Femme Fatalons: For his 'Evil Hornet Gouger' special, he grabs the opponent and uses his very long, razor-sharp fingernails to tear into them multiple times.
  • Fragile Speedster: When playable, he’s got some decent tools, but you need to be on your toes when using him as he can easily become overwhelmed by high-pressure characters like Yoshitora and Rera.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: Since IV split Amakusa into two entities ("good" Amakusa / Aku Amakusa), the previous games' identities have been retconned: I has the two personalities in one body, but split at the end. Aku Amakusa is the playable version in III, and IV has both of them, his Slash variant being the good one and the Bust variant being Aku Amakusa. After Aku Amakusa is defeated by the Kazama brothers and killed by Zankuro, in II the identity is the good one. The rest of his appearances (V Special / VI) are in dream match games, but the VI version is stated to be Aku Amakusa. As revealed in V Perfect, that means the V Special version is also Aku Amakusa. Since 2019 takes place before I, the two are merged once more.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Is a bad guy in the first game but since then there has been a Split Personality issue where Aku Amakusa wants to continue his evil ways, but his default self wants to atone for his sins.
  • Hypocritical Humor: "My religion says all are equal. Peasant."
  • Impractically Fancy Outfit: Sports a voluminous, encumbering kimono that would make a light jog difficult, let along leaping about as he does. 2019 is even more extreme, and he even sports chainmail underneath his kimono.
  • Improbable Weapon User: In a series where most characters wield real-life, historic weaponry, his energy-ball weapon stands out as being completely fantasy-based.
  • Killed Off for Real: Both halves of Amakusa's full spirit meet their own respective ends, with Aku Amakusa being slain at the end of IV while the "good" Amakusa is struck down and killed by Mizuki near the end of II.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Amakusa was heavily implied before his eventual release to be involved in the summoning and possession of Shizuka Gozen in 2019, as the post-credits scene shows his orb glowing red. Turns out it's somewhat of a subversion: he is not the one behind her, but he is a separate agent of the one who is — Ambrosia. Following Shizuka's defeat, Amakusa takes the portion of Ambrosia that was within her and kickstarts the plot of the first game.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: No wonder his gender still causes confusion; his laugh is high-pitched and haughty. His mocking laughter after you hit his counter still haunts players to this day.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: He's based on the historical Amakusa Shiro.
  • Otherworldly and Sexually Ambiguous: He's a magic-using, magically-revived entity and his look is utterly feminine, sporting voluminous hair and clothing, as well as lipstick and eyeshadow.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: In the 2019 game, it's revealed that he was revived by Ambrosia as a vengeful spirit. His ending shows him possessing Shinzo Hattori, his mortal vessel in the later games, in order to fully return to life.
  • Playing with Fire: Amakusa's orb is capable of emitting flames, allowing him to launch fireballs or leap into the air and drop a flaming orb onto his opponent like a meteor.
  • Religious Bruiser: He's based on the real-life Christian minister of the same name.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: His first reason for coming back from the dead, and the basis of his evil self.
  • Shout-Out: Though his portrayal bears similarities with the Amakusa in Makai Tensho, a tale in which Mori Sōiken resurrects other dead historical figures to overthrow the Shogunate, developers haven't confirmed if he was particularly based on him.
  • Sissy Villain: His main hobby is "make-up" and he acts in a camp, haughty manner but he's absolutely not to be underestimated and will readily disembowel you with the magical orb he carries around.
  • SNK Boss: He's less noticeable than other SNK bosses since the AI is broken in SS1 (effectively making every character a boss fight), and there was a bug which allowed the player to win the first round against him easily. Still, he remains a very cheap enemy, as his special moves have zero recovery time, can shatter your combos, and dizzy you quite easily.
  • Take Over the World: His ultimate goal is to lead the entire world under his rule by destroying those who betrayed him first, starting with the Tokugawa Shogunate.
  • Teleport Spam: One of his signature moves, allowing him to stay just out of the opponent's reach.
  • The Power of Hate: In the 2019 game, his hatred for the Tokugawa Shogunate and those who betrayed him are what fuels his undead body after Ambrosia resurrects him.
  • The Undead: In the 2019 game, he's a yurei like Basara, powered by Ambrosia's evil.
  • Undeathly Pallor: Unlike past games, Amakusa's skin is completely pale in the 2019 game, signifying that he's undead.
  • Voice of the Legion: As Aku Amakusa.
  • Weaponized Ball: His orb weapon is infused with demonic energy, but as it's a solid gemstone, it also delivers considerable blunt damage.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown II

    Genjuro Kibagami
Weapon: Meitō Baiōdoku note , a katana
Voiced by: note 

Haohmaru's true rival. A man of many vices, Genjuro is a killer for hire who takes the utmost pleasure in culling those he views as weak. He started out as a decent man, training alongside Haohmaru, but his hunger for power resulted in him failing to be chosen as their dojo's successor and even getting himself expelled. He has a deep-seated hatred for Haohmaru, not just because he's his 'goody-goody' rival, but also because he looks like a man Genjuro killed in defense of his mother.

  • Alternate Company Equivalent: Well, same company, different dev team, but he is likened to a "Samurai Iori Yagami". SNK vs. Capcom: SVC Chaos lampshades this.
    Both at the same time: Vermin!... Die!
  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: Genjuro is very proud of his skills as a hitokiri and looks down on anyone who in his eyes looks "weak".
  • Dark and Troubled Past: He has a lifetime of anger and bitterness built up from childhood. His prostitute mother, whose occupation he understandably hated, had a customer turn violent, forcing him to slay the man in her defense. Perversely, instead of thanking Genjuro, his mother went berserk and attacked him from behind, forcing him to kill her as well — a horrific turn of events which set him on the path of vice and violence.
  • Death Dealer: His special moves (including tossing out cards) and win-poses are all hanafuda references — Japanese cards used to play a variety of games — literally "flower cards".
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Supplementary materials suggest that Genjuro regrets having to kill his mother bigtime — which explains his soft spot to Shiki, a dead-ringer for her.
  • Freudian Excuse: Genjuro had to kill his prostitute mother in self-defense. No fuckin' wonder the dude is pissed off.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: He has a massive gash running up the length of his back from the wound his mother gave him after he slew her john, which is a sign of his twisted past and his character being firmly on the antagonistic side of things.
  • Handsome Devil: Complete with that trademark long red hair of his. What's more, developers wanted to make him a character with "adult appeal" who would leave a lasting impression on players.
  • Iconic Sequel Character: Since he supplanted Ukyo as Haohmaru's rival. He's also made appearances outside of Samurai Shodown (SNK vs. Capcom: SVC Chaos, where he appeared without Haohmaru, and NeoGeo Battle Coliseum) whereas Ukyo has not (at least until the era of mobile games, where Ukyo started popping up here and there, with or without Genjuro).
  • Jerkass: Easily one of the most unpleasant characters in the series, he hates absolutely everyone and everything and has no qualms whatsoever about killing all who dare cross his path.
  • Made of Iron: Genjuro has been shot/stabbed In the Back multiple times in his endings (in V by Sankuro, in 64-2 by a child of a woman that he killed, in 2019 by a random woman that wanted his seat in his gambling hangout), but he'll always recover and come back in the later chronological games (although the 2019 stabbing, which occurs before the first game, would force him to recuperate and not participate in Amakusa's plot, explaining his absence from the initial roster in that game). Apparently he willed himself to live through his hatred of Haohmaru and won't allow himself to die until he kills him personally.
  • Meaningful Name: "Kibagami" translates as "Fanged god" or "Divine fang", "Genjuro" to "apparition of the tenth son".
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Towards Haohmaru.
  • Parasol of Prettiness: He pulls out an umbrella for his match-winning animation, but unlike Shizumaru, his is merely for looks.
  • Psycho for Hire: Hitokiri to be more exact — literally "person-slasher", a swordsman employed to assassinate a given target.
  • The Rival: After he was expelled from the dojo both he and Haohmaru attended (due to his unnatural bloodlust), he has viewed his former classmate as his “goody-goody” rival ever since.
  • Self-Made Orphan: Not exactly by choice — his prostitute mother went crazy on him after he killed a client who was abusing her and he was forced to kill her in self-defense.
  • Social Darwinist: He excuses his killing by rationalizing that people who piss him off are stupid, and stupid people defile the world by their very existence; therefore, he does everyone a favor by killing them.
  • Spam Attack: His Hyakki Satsu (Hundred Demons Killer), which actually turns into a brutal gut-stabbing attack when any of the hits connect.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": "Genjuro" or "Genjyuro"? SNK seems to prefer the latter in more recent games. There's also the fully romanized version of his name as "Genjuurou" as well, which is rarely used.
  • Three-Strike Combo: His Sanren Satsu (Triple Killer), is aptly named, and can either work as a normal hit, or he can slash past/through his opponent with each strike. He uniquely shouts out "Inoshikacho" when he connects all three hits.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Genjuro wears his haori slung off both shoulders, fully exposing his muscular torso.

    Cham Cham
Origin: Green Hell Village, Maya Territory, Mesoamerica flag note 
Weapon: Yok Mok Mook note , a boomerang
Helper: Paku Paku (Normal / Shura, II and VI only)
Voiced by: note 

The little sister of Tam Tam, who likes to act like a cat, playing in the trees and getting shocked by electric eels. She accidentally lost the Tanjil stone and in compensation, tried to retrieve it, accompanied by her pet chimpanzee Paku-Paku. In her ending, she finds out that Paku-Paku IS Tam Tam, cursed as a punishment for her letting the stone become lost in the first place.

  • Ambiguously Human: As a relatively grounded series, Cham Cham is certainly presumed to be human. Nevertheless, while her main pelt, boots, and gloves are obviously clothing, Cham Cham's ears and tail are notably ambiguous. In some games, her cat ears are even colored to match her skin rather than her clothes, and even as recently as the 2019 game, her clothes are stitched around the tail (which is even colored slightly differently) as if to make room for a natural one underneath, rather than something that's part of her outfit. Her brother, it should be noted, also has strange ears, although his are of a super long and pointed elf-like variety.
  • Ass Kicks You: One of her aerial "kicks" is a butt-first hip check.
  • The Beast Master: Controls her pet monkey Paku-Paku, who can be summoned to attack for her, which includes throwing skulls, emitting fireballs, and a spinning kick attack. Averted in the 2019 game as Tam Tam hasn't been transformed into Paku Paku yet.
  • Cat Girl: Sports cat ears and an actual tail. She's often compared with Felicia and even has her color scheme as an alt.
  • Cosplay: Mostly seen in her own Pachinko Spin-Off Samurai Spirits Gaiden: Cham Cham, where Cham Cham can dress in modern outfits as well as cosplays, like Dragon Gal's Mui Mui and Fio Germi.
  • Cute Bruiser: Adorable, and fights in a far more feral manner than her fellow females.
  • Downloadable Content: She returns to the series as part of the third season of DLC characters in 2019.
  • Genki Girl: Always in high spirits.
  • Jungle Princess: Her look — unlike her brother Tam Tam, her design takes no cues from the Mayincatec aesthetic.
  • Non-Standard Character Design: Arguably. Prior to her debut in the second game, the series' tone was fairly serious, gory, and grounded in a (heightened) sense of reality. When Cham-Cham debuted, she was designed so as to be far more cartoonish and whimsical than any of her series contemporaries, and her Cat Girl aesthetic borrows far more from fantasy-based anime than any real-world cultural cues — there's absolutely nothing Mesoamerican in her design, despite her being Tam Tam's sister.
  • Precision F-Strike: Though it could be due to wonky localization, the first word she said in her Arcade story is "Shit!". In a game from The '90s!
  • Precision-Guided Boomerang: Her melee and projectile attacks employ her boomerang, which returns back to her even if she's being thrown.
  • Promoted to Playable: Paku Paku is playable in VI.
  • Secret Character: In the PlayStation port of IV, marketed as Samurai Shodown IV Special for a Japan-only release, Cham Cham appears as an unlockable character, only being selectable in Versus Mode. Some of II’s portraits are reused for the game.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Probably based on Feral Kid from Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior, but a female version of him.
    • Not to mention the green hair and the tiger-print clothes, which are similar to Lum.
  • Wild Child: So much so that she actually dresses like a jungle cat, and her movement patterns suggest an animal, not a human.

    Neinhalt Sieger
Origin: Königsberg, Kingdom of Prussia flag note 
Voiced by: note 

Leader of the Prussian Red Lion Knights. He protects his country from Mizuki, and his soul happens to be one of the souls that Mizuki seeks in order to resurrect Ambrosia. He is, however, saved by Amakusa and later contributed in Mizuki's defeat. He returned home victorious and marries Princess Elizabeth, King William’s daughter.

  • Badass Baritone: Rather deep-voiced. Very badass.
  • Bodyguard Crush: His true love is the daughter of the Prussian king, Princess Elizabeth, who loves him back. They end up Happily Married in his ending.
  • Blue Blood: He's noted as being the commander of the Red Lion Knights and therefore in German-speaking Prussia, he would be addressed as Ritter, which is analogous to the English knightly rank.
  • Gorgeous Gaijin: In a series primarily made up of Asian men, he's amongst the Token White guys, and sports the usual visual cues — a huge build, extreme height, chiseled facial features, and a Lantern Jaw of Justice. He's also stripped to the waist to boot.
  • Heroic Build: He's huge — notably 7'0", practically a giant — but maintains a pleasing, manly proportion.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: With Princess Elizabeth — par for the course when you’re 7 foot tall.
  • Hunk: Sieger was designed so as to appeal to players who appreciate a more manly aesthetic.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Is one of the biggest and most muscular characters amongst the cast, but is quite quick on his feet.
  • Love Freak: Based on his win-quote: "Love is the best weapon in the world."
  • Meaningful Name: Loosely translates from German as "Unstoppable Victor".
  • Megaton Punch: Kind of hard not to when you pack a weapon like his.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Surprisingly, there actually was a legendary warrior who also fought with a metal arm. Gottfried von Berlichingen, better known as the "Iron Hand", was a German Knight who fashioned himself a large mechanical gauntlet after he lost his arm in battle.
  • Patriotic Fervor: He's undyingly loyal to the Prussian Crown.
  • Perpetual Frowner: According to his profile info, he considers his most unpleasant trait to be that he, in his own words, can't smile to save his life.
  • Power Fist: His weapon is a massive gauntlet, but it's not just for punching — it also shoots fire and sets his body alight.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: He's stripped to the waist in all appearances.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: He's got a rather nasty backbreaker.

    Nicotine Caffeine (Nikochin Kafūin)
Origin: Hida Province, Japan flag 
Weapon: a nameless shakujō note 
Voiced by: note 

An old priest, formerly the master of both Haohmaru and Genjuro. He expelled Genjuro due to his bloodlust, and keeps tabs on Haohmaru, especially when Mizuki starts targeting him. He retires from combat soon after Mizuki's defeat. Later in the 64 series, he is entrusted with Shiki's daughter Mikoto, raising her with help from Haohmaru and his grandson, Gaira.

  • Badass Preacher: He's the head priest of the Koka-in temple in Hida Province.
  • Cool Old Guy: Enters the fray with a wry smile and a twinkly gaze — nothing fazes him.
  • Elemental Powers: With his cards, he is able to summon both a hawk-like shikigami entirely composed of electricity, and also a beast-like one entirely composed of fire.
  • Interface Screw: One of his attacks will reverse your joystick controls for a brief time.
  • Meaningful Name: "Kafuin" translates as "Flower temple chanting", and "Nikochin" to "harmonious relation". It's also a pun on Nicotine and Caffeine, but it was carried overseas as the pun.
  • Miniature Senior Citizens: He's amongst the oldest characters in the series, and his sprite is also amongst the smallest at 4’5” — meaning he's often a hard target in battle.
  • Old Master: To both Haohmaru and Genjuro.
  • Paper Talisman: Using his o-fuda cards, he can summon a variety of mystical creatures.
  • Parental Substitute: He's one for Mikoto after Shiki's death, along with Haohmaru and Gaira.
  • Punny Name: His real name is Nikochin Kafūin (花諷院 和仲), though due to being a witty pun on the English words "caffeine" and "nicotine", his name is usually written in katakana. His temple of Koka-in doesn't escape either, being a pun on "cocaine".
  • Put on a Bus: After his sole appearance in II and before his comeback in VI, Nicotine only appears as a cameo in all Gaira's endings since III and in Mikoto's backstory in the Distant Finale.
  • Shout-Out: Probably based on the monk Dakuan from Ninja Scroll.

    Mizuki Rashojin
Weapon: Mi-gō no Tamagushi note , a gohei note 
Helper: Maju / Haon (RPG)
Voiced by: note 

A vengeful spirit who made a pact with Ambrosia, she is notable as one of the first female Final Bosses in fighting game history and causes worldwide disasters and calamities around the globe. Mizuki is eventually defeated, but returns in other games — centuries later, her soul still exists and she was absorbed into Verse and travels to the present day.

  • Arch-Enemy: For Nakoruru, since she's the one responsible for forcing her to Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence. She was also amongst the souls absorbed into Verse in the present-day, which becomes a big factor as to why Nakoruru also travels to the future to stop her. Based solely on their looks, it's Ainu priestess versus Japanese Miko.
  • Back from the Dead: Like the rest of the villains inhabiting Verse, such as Orochi, the New Faces Team, Ash, and Rugal, his defeat is implied to have returned Mizuki to life.
  • Baleful Polymorph: One of her attacks will briefly turn you into a helpless animal, usually a pig.
  • Body Snatcher: Mizuki is a former famine victim who, upon her own violent death hundreds of years before the series is set, made a pact with the demon Ambrosia and ultimately possessed the shrine-maiden, Bizuki, which is her current form.
  • The Beast Master: With her beast Maju note  who, like Galford's wolf Poppy, can be commanded to attack the opponent.
  • Big Bad: Something of a first in fighting games — a female boss.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: The Samurai Shodown RPG explains that 800 years before Samurai Shodown II took place, a young Mizuki was abandoned by her parents during a massive famine. The little girl crossed the Despair Event Horizon and made a Deal with the Devil with Ambrosia, turning herself into an angry demon that spent years laying waste around the globe.
  • Evil Laugh: "Rakikikiki..." Once romanized by SNK as "RKKKK."
  • Femme Fatalons: She uses her long, claw-like fingernails to deliver multi-hitting slash attacks.
  • A Form You Are Comfortable With: It's implied that Maju itself is a part of Ambrosia. However, Samurai Shodown 64 retcons it as a creation of Yuga.
  • He's Back!: She's one of the souls contained within Verse and traveled with him to present-day KOF, pursued by Nakoruru. With Verse defeated and the souls returned to their original bodies, Mizuki has the chance of spreading her terror into the present day.
  • Interface Screw: One of her moves reverses your direction controls, which causes chaos for the player as she's tough enough to defeat as is.
  • Meaningful Name: Has the title of "Supreme leader deity", and Mizuki is a common name but here it's written as Seer.
  • Miko: Or more exactly, the woman whose body she stole was a miko, but she retains the typical red and white costume. Her weapon, a tamagushi, is one of the traditional miko tools used in religious services — although she uses hers to beat the hell out of her opponents.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: Usually when using her teleportation powers.
  • Nun Too Holy: She's an evil, demonic entity but dresses in the innocuous, saintly garb of a miko (the purest of the pure in Japanese culture and analogous to Christian nuns) — a dichotomy that only goes to enhance her terrifyingly corrupted nature.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Both her soul and host-body are really old — Mizuki is from the Heian era, 1000 years before II — but her body started to break down 700 years later and had to stay dormant. Some 100 years later (late Sengoku), she took over the body of Bizuki.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Sports bright red, demonic eyes.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Betrayed by her own family in death, she makes a pact with the demon Ambrosia, and lays waste to whoever gets in her way out of sheer anger and spite.
  • SNK Boss: She's very fast and her weapon can't be broken, for starters.
  • Voice of the Legion: Less distorted than the typical example, though.

Origin: Kawachi Province, Japan flag 
Weapons: Referee flags

A mysterious fighter that acts as the judge of the fights in a few of the games. He has four other brothers that dress identically to him, making them indistinguishable from each other. He is a powerful fighter, but rarely enters the arena. While he appears in the first game, he doesn’t reveal himself as a fighter until the second.

  • Bonus Boss: In II you will fight him either randomly or after fulfilling certain conditions. He's also the Mid-Boss of III.
  • Combat Medic: Stated to be proficient in surgery and "resurrecting the dead", which is a nod to the early games where he and his brothers cart defeated fighters off in a tatami death-shroud to be.....resuscitated.
  • Ditto Fighter: In II and III, he turns into the player's character or a random one.
  • Improbable Weapon User: He uses red and white flags (used in martial arts competitions to denote when a player hits an opponent) as his weapons, and these cannot be destroyed or lost in battle.
  • Moveset Clone: His 64 move-set is almost identical to Rasetsu Hanzo's. In II and VI, his stance is identical to that of Tung Fu Rue's from Fatal Fury (Special onward) and The King of Fighters series.
  • No Name Given: His name is obscured in the II credits. It's been revealed that his real name is Sukihiro ("Kuroko" is just an alias).
  • Shout-Out: Mostly to other SNK games. He is the embodiment of this trope — for example, in II he uses powers from early SNK fighting games like Art of Fighting and Fatal Fury. In VI, almost all his powers come from The King of Fighters series.
  • SNK Boss: He's strong and extremely fast. Plus in II, his weapon can't be broken.
  • Whole Costume Reference: He’s based on and dressed just like real life kuroko, who are meant to be anonymous and "invisible" stage-men in Japanese theatre — his "dislike" in his bio is noted as being "actors who can't remember their lines". The color black (Kuro) in Kabuki and Noh theatres signifies invisibility.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown III

Origin: Kamuikotan, the Ainu Lands, Ezo flag note 
Weapon: Hahakuru note , a kodachi
Helper: Konru
Voiced by:note 

Nakoruru's adoptive little sister. She is also a priestess of the Ainu tribe and fights using an ice spirit named Konru, as well as her kodachi. At first, Nakoruru forbade her from fighting, but she managed to build up enough resolve to be acknowledged as capable enough by the time of the third game.

  • An Ice Person: Wields a kodachi, but also uses her companion ice-spirit in combat. This primarily manifests as spears of ice that pierce the opponent, as well as large chunks of ice used for crushing attacks.
  • Badass Native: Like her sister, she is a member of Hokkaidō's indigenous Ainu people, and her debut costume was a very realistic depiction of traditional Ainu women's national dress. Her ice-based powers reflect the Ainu's close relationship with the natural world, as well as her native Hokkaidō's bitingly cold polar winters.
  • Big Brother Worship: Rimururu idolizes her sister and wants to be like her every way possible.
  • Cheerful Child: Jolly, smiley and full of beans!
  • Close-Range Combatant: She has probably the shortest range in the entire series due to her petite stature and short kodachi, which is why using Konru effectively is an absolute must when playing her.
  • Downloadable Content: She was the very first DLC character to drop for 2019, and like many of the other characters, she sports an updated look (including a fur cape and longer hair) that still retains her classic silhouette.
  • Just a Kid: And she doesn't like being treated as such — she lists her greatest dislike as being treated like a child.
  • Kill the Cutie: Her age and cute looks don't save her in the slightest from the life-and-death brutality of combat.
  • Little Miss Badass: An adorable teenage girl whose cheerful facade belies her deadly combat skills.
  • Nature Spirit: Her companion spirit Konru manifests as a prism of ice which spins in the air just behind her, and all of her special moves are ice-based. Konru literally means "ice" in the Ainu language.
  • Not Blood Siblings: She’s Nakoruru’s adopted sister, though their bond isn't any less strong.
  • Plucky Girl: Despite the terrifying, bloody circumstances she finds herself confronted by, she maintains an admiral level of pluckiness.
  • Promoted to Playable: Rimururu appeared in the first two games as part of Nakoruru's story, stages, and endings, but it wasn't until III that she finally appeared as a playable character.
  • Snow Means Cold: Rimururu's stages are all set in the village of Kamuikotan on Ezo during the winter. In 2019, her stage is the same village location as her sister's, but it's set in the absolute depths of winter and is a snow-covered, icy variation — which is perfect for An Ice Person like her.
  • Spell My Name with an "S":
    • In some games, her name is mistranslated as Rimnerel.
    • Also, her ice spirit is sometimes called Konril.
  • Tomboy: Much more energetic than her sister and sports a short, choppy hairdo and baggy shorts.

Origin: Tamba Province, Japan flag 
Voiced by: note 

Fully titled Basara the Executioner (Kubikiri Basara). A restless spirit who was killed alongside his lover Kagaribi at the hands of the "demon" Zankuro Minazuki. He is brought back to the living world, remembering only his intense hate for "the demon". Convinced by an apparition of Kagaribi that he must "slay evil souls", he embarks on a vengeful killing spree. He is eventually sealed away in a stone pillar for eternity by Aku Amakusa.

  • Ax-Crazy: He's a mindless, violently insane killer who doesn't discriminate among the victims he murders.
  • Ball of Light Transformation: Basara can use his ghostly powers to transform into a ball of spirit flame and back into humanoid form.
  • Confusion Fu: One of the cornerstones of his play-style is to spawn shadow clones of himself to fake-out the opponent.
  • Downloadable Content: He returns to the series in 2019 as part of the first season of DLC characters.
  • Driven to Suicide: His ending in 2019 sees him trying to do this in order to be with Kagaribi. It doesn't work.
  • Fuuma Shuriken: Wields a giant shuriken attached to a length of chain.
  • Gorn: His fatality, where he drags the opponent into a hellish black pit before an enormous eruption of blood blasts their severed head back out.
  • Highly Visible Ninja: Although Basara's powers are explained mainly through his ghost abilities, they also resemble powers usually identified with ninja. This is complemented by Basara's weaponry and costuming which are also associated with ninja — respectively his shuriken weapon and baggy pants, for example.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: His vengeful rampage has turned him into a bloodthirsty man-slayer.
  • Hitodama Light: As a restless spirit, Basara can summon a hitodama called "Soul of Nue" that he uses as an attack, as well as to transform in and out of a hitodama himself.
  • Implausible Deniability: In 2019, it's revealed that this is his reaction to the revelation that he killed Kagaribi in V. Basara denies the horrible truth, convinces himself that it's all Zankuro's fault and that his death will finally reunite him with Kagaribi.
  • Kill the Ones You Love: In his previous life, Basara lived in peace with his lover, Kagaribi, until the monstrous demonic swordsman Zankuro appeared on the scene and began slaughtering everyone. He blames "the demon" for Kagaribi's demise but, in V, it is revealed that Basara himself killed her.
  • Laughing Mad: Less so in earlier games, but taken Up to Eleven in the 2019 game, where half his dialogue consists of Yamazaki-esque cackling.
  • Love Makes You Evil: All he wants is to be with his beloved Kagaribi again, so he kills people indiscriminately under the belief that he will be able to see her again.
    "Tell me, Kagaribi... How many more must I hunt before you forgive me? Because I will not stop hunting until you do!"
  • Meaningful Name: The title of "Kubikiri" means "Executioner" and/or "Beheader". His name is written as "Sal tree destroyer", but is pronounced as "unrestrained".
  • My God, What Have I Done?: In a plot twist revealed in V, it was Basara who killed Kagaribi in a delirium caused by Zankuro fatally wounding him.
  • Only One Name: First assumed to be his last name, but "Kubikiri" is a title for Basara. His real last name is unknown.
  • Precision-Guided Boomerang: The way his giant shuriken works — it spins off its chain at some points but always returns.
  • Shout-Out: Considered by many as the Japanese version of The Crow.
  • Together in Death: Averted and Gone Horribly Wrong. He and Kagaribi both certainly died together, but he remains a Revenant Zombie and she a ghost surrounding the former.
  • The Undead: The series’ resident zombie character.
  • Undeathly Pallor: Depending on the game, Basara's skin can be pale or sickening rotting flesh color.
  • Unknown Rival: For Zankuro.
  • Unwitting Pawn: To Amakusa, who resurrected him for the purpose of harvesting souls in order to call forth Ambrosia. Basara is none too pleased when he finds out about this in IV.
  • Vengeful Ghost: Wants nothing more than to see the one who killed him and his lover dead. After finding out it was he himself who killed Kagaribi, he turns on Zankuro. After he finds Zankuro dead, he turns on Amakusa, who is behind his resurrection. It's revealed in Basara's ending in 2019 that Kagaribi is this to him, holding a grudge against him for murdering her and forcing him into punishment by means of denying him death until she is appeased.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Fights topless, combined with baggy ninja trousers.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Aku Amakusa cruelly disposes of him in IV by trapping him inside a stone pillar, never to be released again.
  • Youkai: A Yurei (幽霊), which are figures in Japanese folklore, analogous to Western legends of ghosts.

    Shizumaru Hisame
Weapons: Kirisame & Oharae no Magagami Shizumaru note , an oil-paper umbrella & wakizashi
Voiced by: note 

An amnesiac boy who was deemed a "demon" by fearful villagers. Following a traumatic past, he trains and seeks advice from Haohmaru, who he views as a big brother figure. After learning about the great "demon" Zankuro Minazuki, he travels with Haohmaru to defeat him.

  • Ambiguously Related: His relation to Zankuro Minazuki, the boss of the third game. According to the developers of III, they are not related but, by contrast, the staff working on the later fifth game state that Shizumaru's real name is Jin / Yaiba Minazuki.note 
  • Amnesiac Dissonance: He can't remember his very early childhood, and was adopted by a monk in infancy.
  • Apologetic Attacker: Some of his win-poses see him do a double-take, mutter an apology, and bow respectfully to his fallen opponent. Also, after performing his fatality in V Special, the poor boy will be horrified to see his rival dead and collapse in tears.
  • Badass Adorable: Just look at him. Would you believe this little guy can keep up with seasoned samurai and ninja masters?
  • Cute Shotaro Boy: He's a polite, well-meaning young boy with a keen sense of responsibility and exhibits a plucky, serious attitude towards his mission to warn others about the "demon" within him.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Because he was deemed to be a "demon" since childhood, he had to live and survive alone.
  • Demonic Possession: His Super Special Move in 2019 confirms that he does have some sort of demonic power or entity within him, which drives him into a berserk frenzy complete with Black Eyes of Crazy.
  • Downloadable Content: He returns to the series in 2019 as a surprise bonus amongst the first season of DLC characters.
  • Kid Hero: One of the youngest characters, if not the youngest and in most of the games he appears in, he’s a tender 12 years old.
  • Kid Samurai: Certainly in terms of his age, and his role as a “little brother” figure to some of the older samurai men in the cast.
  • Kill the Cutie: Despite his tender years, he's spared none of the series' legendarily graphic brutality and is subject to the same horrific fatalities as all of the other characters, which can be uncomfortable, all things considered.
  • Meaningful Name: "Hisame" translates as "Scarlet Rain", although the developers made a pun with "Rain of Blood". "Shizu" translates as "Quiet". If you take his alleged true name into account, "Jin / Yaiba" means "sword", while his surname "Minazuki" translates to "moonless sky on the 9th sign of the Chinese calendar". The latter in particular refers to the phenomenon of a crimson moon. Put them both together and you essentially get "sword of the blood-red moon", which not only ties into his theme regarding the color red but also denotes his latent thirst for violence.
  • Parasol of Pain: He wields an oil-paper parasol with a bladed edge, which acts as his primary weapon. He can whap the opponent with the tip, send it spinning towards them in the manner of an arcing fireball attack, and deadliest of all, spin it round rapidly to suck the opponent in and deliver a horrific multi-hitting rotor-blade style attack. He also wields a wakizashi.
  • Rain of Blood: His super in 2019 is amongst the most horrifically gory in the game. After hurling his parasol at the opponent, he lunges at them screaming and carves a huge gash up their middle, which sends a veritable shower of blood pouring all over the arena floor whilst he looks on horrified from beneath his blood-soaked parasol.
  • Red Is Violent: In his main outfit and hair-highlights, the color red is predominant, and despite his tender look, he's as dangerous as anyone else in the roster.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: His "seppuku" animation in IV causes him to bow to his opponent and run like hell.
  • Shout-Out: Visually to Himura Kenshin. Most westerners saw him as one to Ranma ½, having Ranma's hairstyle and female hair color as well as Ryouga's trademark weapon (an umbrella).
  • Shrines and Temples: His stage in 2019 is set in the courtyard of the beautiful Tōshō-gū temple complex in Nikko, which has for centuries been a sacred site known for its architectural and decorative masterpieces.
  • Shrinking Violet: A relatively rare male example, he's very sweet-natured, if a little melancholic.
  • Sickly Green Glow: During his fatality in V Special, Shizumaru becomes engulfed in a terrifying green aura, accompanied by a glowing hallucination of Zankuro, hinting at their connection. The aura returns in 2019, only this time it also makes his eyes glow green.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: He was rumored to be a 'demon' by his fellow villagers, and eventually he finds out that he does indeed have a demon bloodlust within him, similarly to Zankuro. This is alluded to in Shizumaru's fatality in V Special — as he prepares to finish off the opponent, a hallucination of Zankuro appears behind him. He misses the killing blow and blacks out from the mental stress, but the phantom Zankuro slices the opponent clean in half, leaving Shizumaru horrified when he regains consciousness. Eventually, he comes to accept his "demon" as a natural part of himself and makes peace with his past.
  • They Call Him "Sword": The monk who adopted him in infancy named him 'Shizumaru' after the inscription on the sword found with him.
  • Troubled, but Cute: Sweeter than the standard, but with a VERY Dark and Troubled Past.

    Gaira Caffeine (Kafūin)
Origin: Hida Province, Japan flag 
Weapon: Namu Amida Butsu, a giant ojuzu note 
Voiced by: note 

Nicotine's enormous, slow-witted grandson. After an argument with Nicotine, Gaira ran off from Koka-in temple to train, and witnessed Zankuro's killing spree, but was too afraid to stop him. After Amakusa and Zankuro are defeated for good, Gaira eventually returns in peace to the temple.

  • Bare-Fisted Monk: He's a giant monk of the Koka-in Temple in Hida, and fights with his huge fists and a Buddhist rosary.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: Fights with his (gigantic) feet uncovered.
  • Dumb Muscle: An incredibly strong guy who sports a very impressive musculature for someone as young as 18 years old, but he's certainly not the smartest of the series’ characters.
  • Gentle Giant: From III to IV, he represented the "giant" character of the series, until the appearance of Kusaregedo in V and the return of other large-sprite characters in VI.
  • The Giant: He's 7'5" — enormous for a Japanese man in the 1700s and only really possible due to medical disorders of the pituitary gland.
  • Improbable Weapon User: A huge Buddhist rosary which he smashes into the opponent with deadly force — characters like Mina and Nakoruru can only take two or three heavy hits.
  • Ironic Name: Gaira translates as "lightweight body".
  • Mighty Glacier: He's positively enormous and very slow with it.
  • The Slacker: His blasé, carefree attitude contrasts strongly with the solemn nature of his profession, leading to several arguments with Nicotine over his behavior, and although he acts as though he doesn't care for the temple, in reality, he is hesitant to accept his responsibilities to the Buddhist faith at such a young age.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": As with his grandfather, his last name would usually be written as "Kafūin", but the pun on "caffeine" carried over with him too.
  • Taken for Granite: His Fatality turns the enemy into stone. He then proceeds to shatter him/her.
  • Transatlantic Equivalent: He's known as Kim Ung Che in Fighters Swords, the Korean version of the third game, made for the South Korean market. The name is a direct Korean translation of “Gaira”. Said counterpart appears as a separate character in VI with the look of III-IV Gaira, but with a white outfit instead of Gaira's blue, and they can actually be pitched against each other in a Mirror Match.

    Zankuro Minazuki
Voiced by: note 

The third game's final boss. Trying his hardest to perfect his swordsmanship, he became a brutal killer, likened to a demon. He slaughtered people indiscriminately until he came across a girl named Shiori and couldn't bring himself to kill her (she is actually revealed to be his daughter). Realizing what kind of man he has become, he calls it quits and retires into his hermitage, swearing only to raise his sword to fight a Worthy Opponent. In later games, he's revived and killed a few times (once by a lightning bolt of all things), but is eventually Killed Off for Real by Sogetsu.

  • Ambiguously Related: Shizumaru (birth name Jin/Yaiba Minazuki) is either his son, nephew, or simply shares his surname — it's never been clarified — though the fact that Zankuro appears as a looming, ghostly presence in Shizumaru's fatality is telling.
  • Anti-Villain: He was once a cold-blooded killer but he has since retired and won't kill people indiscriminately — yet he's still the Big Bad.
  • Badass Normal: Unlike Amakusa and Mizuki, Zankuro doesn't rely on sorcery or the dark powers of Ambrosia, being the first boss character to do so in the series. He wields a zanbatō which he uses to attack with amazing speed and strength. In his first boss appearance, he could easily defeat his foe in two to three strikes.
  • BFS: His zanbatō (a giant katana) is absolutely massive, standing about as tall as he is when it's planted in the ground.
  • Blood Knight: A brutal version — he was once a kind man who lived happily with his family. He eventually went blind with blood lust and started to slay others to compensate, unintentionally killing his wife in the process.
  • Hijacked by Ganon: IV (subtitled AMAKUSA'S REVENGE for crying out loud) revolves around a new plan formulated by a re-reawakened Classic Villain, so you would think said classic villain would be the final boss. Nope, after defeating Aku Amakusa, the big stone obelisk in the background of the final stage explodes, Aku Amakusa gets sliced in half, and in walks, a newly resurrected Zankuro, who in the third game—it should be noted—was just a normal human who was killed by lightning!
  • Large and in Charge: He's huge, standing 7'11", with gigantic arms and an intimidating stance.
  • Meaningful Name: Minazuki translates as "Moonless sky on the ninth sign of the Chinese calendar". Zankuro as "Crimson beheader son".
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Calls time on his killing spree after coming across a girl named Shiori, who he discovers (thankfully just in time) is his daughter. This causes him to rethink his approach and only fight worthy opponents.
  • Rated M for Manly: Definitely!
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: His fearful reputation started when a Karō (high-ranking samurai) and his minions kidnapped his child, Kakunoshin. After Zankuro found out, they were soon all dead — even his son.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: What he becomes after his death in the third game... which Amakusa tries to release.
  • SNK Boss: By IV, he had the greatest reach and base strength of all bosses, as well as great speed.
  • Sword Beam: His fatality in V consists of a super-powered slash that fires a green wave of death at his foe, totally obliterating him/her except for the lower parts of their feet.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: In III, where combos are restricted and doing them from behind is one of the few effective ways, he can't be combo-ed from behind, as he will magically block any second hit you might attempt to land on him, leading to some heavy retribution. From that same game, he has a True Final Boss form, where you must knock him down a third time, the cheating part being that even if you have not been knocked out before, you'll lose if he wins the round, and if you win by time out, you also lose the game. Finally in IV, his Desperation Attack is a one hit kill if it catches you in the air.
  • True Final Boss: In III, as mentioned above.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown IV

    Kazuki Kazama
Origin: Wataribashi-no-shita, Hizen Province, Japan flag note 
Weapon: Suzaku note , a ninjatō
Weapon (as Enja Kazuki): Punch-based martial arts
Voiced by: note 

A ninja of the Kazama clan, younger brother of Sogetsu, and way too Hot-Blooded. He typically fights in defense of his sister, Hazuki, who frequently finds herself kidnapped at the hands of the series' various BigBads, or to subdue the fire demon Enja, who is eventually sealed within his Flaming Sword.

  • Anime Hair: Sports big, Dragon Ball-style red hair.
  • The Berserker: As Enja Kazuki, he is reduced to this state due to not being strong-willed enough to control Enja, causing the fire demon to completely overwhelm and possess his body. This serves to starkly contrast with his brother, whose empowered form sees Sogetsu in total control and making Suija subservient to him.
  • Big Brother Instinct: He cares deeply for the safety of his sister Hazuki, which typically forms his motivation for fighting.
  • Big Ol' Eyebrows
  • Charged Attack: Kazuki can use his special move Flames Of Disaster to charge up a floating fireball. The fireball can be charged up to three levels and its size will indicate the level charged. It can then be used for his projectile move or command grab move, dealing large amounts of damage.
  • Curtains Match the Window: Sports red hair and eyes.
  • Difficult, but Awesome: His Bust version revolves around a combination of a slide kick to trip his opponent, a hammer punch to slam them against a wall and a rising punch and kick combo to hit them afterward. If timed perfectly (which is tough), the opponent is caught in a full set of attacks, which he follows up by taking out his sword and slamming the opponent into the ground, doing up to half their health in a single combo.
  • Downloadable Content: He returns to the series in 2019 as part of the first season of DLC characters.
  • Family Theme Naming: When looking at the Japanese characters of the Kazama siblings' names, they all have the kanji (月), which means moon. The first kanji of their names also match their color scheme and elemental abilities, with Kazuki's being (火), which means flame.
  • Festival Episode: His character stage in 2019, Sumidagawa, is new to the series and is based on the mother of all summer fireworks festivals in Tokyo, the Sumida River Fireworks Show, which is still held annually every July.
  • Fiery Redhead: Sports bright red hair and a fiery personality — his whole character is essentially fire incarnate.
  • Flaming Sword: His ninjatō is permanently inducted with fire, yet it's unclear if this is achieved through coating it in an accelerant, or whether via some ninja spell.
  • Highly Visible Ninja: He's wearing a friggin' RED costume and his sword is actually on fire. Blending techniques clearly aren't his thing...
  • Hot-Blooded: In keeping with his fire-based theme.
  • Knight Templar Big Brother: Hurt Hazuki in any way, and he'll crisp you.
  • Meaningful Name: The "Kazama" clan name translates as "Windy place", but it is also a different way to write the "Fuuma" clan name. "Kazuki" translates as "Fire Month / Fire Moon".
  • Ninja Log: A morbid variant: Kazuki can disappear in an explosion of fire and reappar elsewhere, leaving behind what appears to be his torsoless lower half where he once was.
  • Playing with Fire: The most overtly fire-based fighter in the series. He IS fire.
  • Red Is Violent: Kazuki has red clothes, hair and eyes.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Obviously, he's the Red Oni for Sogetsu's Blue Oni.
  • Say My Name: HAZUKIIII!!!
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: In keeping with the Kazama brothers' antithetical fire/water theme.

    Sogetsu Kazama
Origin: Wataribashi-no-shita, Hizen Province, Japan flag note 
Weapon: Seiryu note , a ninjatō note 
Weapon (as Suija Sogetsu): Kick-based martial arts
Voiced by: note 

Kazuki's big brother, and a lot more aloof and calm in manner. When their younger sister Hazuki gets kidnapped and Kazuki runs off to rescue her, Sogetsu was assigned with the mission to kill his brother for desertion. He doesn't go through with it and fakes Kazuki's death so they may all live in peace. Inside his weapon is a water-demon named Suija, who is sealed in the same way as Enja is sealed in Kazuki's weapon.

  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: Oh, yes. Almost all of Sogetsu's win quotes involve him being a total dick towards his opponents and telling them how much they suck. Notably, even after absorbing Suija into his weapon, Sogetsu's personality completely dominates Suija's whenever he channels the water demon's presence, meaning he's always been like this. Suija's egomania has no effect on him because Sogetsu is just as egotistical as Suija.
  • Aloof Big Brother: To Kazuki and Hazuki.
  • Downloadable Content: He returns to the series in 2019 as part of the second wave of DLC characters.
  • Drowning Pit: For his super in 2019, he traps his opponent inside a huge ball of water, suffocating them. He then hurls two watery-blades into the ball, savaging the opponent and turning the water inside a grim blood-red, before finally firing off a bubble-attack, exploding the ball and the enveloped opponent.
  • Family Theme Naming: When looking at the Japanese characters for the Kazama siblings' names, they all have the kanji (月), which means moon. The first kanji of their names also match their color scheme and elemental abilities, with Sogetsu's being (蒼), which means blue.
  • Friend or Idol Decision: In IV, he has to decide between the life of his brother, or his duty to his clan. He picks Friend and sets it up so that it looks like he picked Idol to avoid banishment or the death of Kazuki.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: As his win quotes can attest, he can be quite the vain jerk when he wants to. That said, it's clear he cares a lot about the people closest to him from his interactions with Kazuki and Hazuki.
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy: He's almost as beautiful as Ukyo.
  • Making a Splash: Unusually for fighting games, where augmenting elements are typically restricted to fire, wind and lightening, he fights with water-based powers, including geyser and bubble attacks, as well as a puddle teleport.
  • Meaningful Name: The "Kazama" clan name translates as "Windy place", but it is also a different way to write the "Fuuma" clan name. "Sogetsu" translates as "Azure Month / Azure Moon".
  • Ninja: Unlike Kazuki, he's not as overtly visible, as he can hide in water.
  • Not So Stoic: When defeated, he screams his brother's name.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: He's the Blue for Kazuki's Red.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: In keeping with the Kazama brothers' antithetical fire/water theme.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown V

    Yoshitora Tokugawa
Voiced by: note 

Heir of the Tokugawa regime (yes, that Tokugawa), he’s rebellious, party crazy and would rather hit on women than govern. He is called back to leadership when his master Gaoh pulls a coup and he is compelled to take him down, helped by Hanzo and Jubei. Finally realizing that With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility, Yoshitora took the position of Shogun. He is also responsible of arranging the tournament behind the sixth game.

  • Anime Hair: Wild even for this series, he sports hair like a huge, coiffed broom.
  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: He's very cocky in his skills, which is only rivaled by his confidence in his looks.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Connecting with every single one of his special moves opens up access to his Yuchōka special, a screen-filling projectile that is so powerful it can win entire matches by itself. The problem? A few of the moves you need to unlock it are very situational and nigh-impossible to land in a real match. Fortunately, his overall move-set is considered well-rounded as it is, so unlocking the Final Sword is more for style points. In both VI and 2019 he has a super move that basically amounts to him comboing all his special moves together, which also unlocks the move, but this has its own issues.
  • BFS: That huge zanbatō (giant katana) he carries on his lower back. It's only used for his One-Hit KO attack (see Awesome, but Impractical).
  • The Casanova: In victory, he never leaves the battlefield without a lady (or three) in tow.
  • Chivalrous Pervert: He's definitely a skirt-chaser, but seems to respect and treat women well at the end of the day.
  • Comes Great Responsibility: The weight of having the Tokugawa surname lays heavily on his party-loving shoulders.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Despite his womanizing ways, his bio lists him as despising alcohol.
  • Flower Motifs: All of his special moves are accompanied by bursts of floral energy corresponding to the flowers his girlfriends/weapons are named after — "Nadeshiko!"
  • The Hedonist: Like many an aristocrat, his main hobbies are partying and the pursuit of female admirers. Under the "likes" section of his bio, he lists "any kind of amusing diversion".
  • Hunk: He's definitely got the looks, build and charm.
  • King Incognito: He likes playing this, as the Tokugawa name is a fun-impeding burden he'd rather ditch sometimes.
  • Meaningful Name: The august family name Tokugawa means "River of Virtue", and his given name means "Pleasant Tiger", alluding to his charming, yet somewhat predatory sexual appetite.
  • Narcissist: He's dashingly handsome, but doesn't he just know it.
    Yoshitora: "Don't worry, you're not dead. I really am this good-looking."
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Based on the year V occurs (1786), his character is loosely based on Tokugawa Ienari, the eleventh Tokugawa shogun who ruled a rather decadent era.
  • Rebel Prince: Although he's heir to the Shogunate, he's more interested in women and partying than politics, and runs away from his palace home, refusing to be the next ruler. It takes Gaoh starting a rebellion against his family to lure him back to governance.
  • Royal Blood: A few of the characters would be considered nobles in the Japanese sense, as the samurai class is analogous to the English knightly class, though Yoshitora is easily from the most august family, as he's heir to the Tokugawa Shogunate and his father is the de facto ruler of Japan.
  • Royal Harem: One of his defining characteristics is his insatiable sexual appetite, and he keeps a harem of six beautiful women of varying types (cute and sweet, demure and vampish) close to hand — all of whom he names his swords after.
  • Rule of Cool: Way too many swords to handle by any normal person, no matter how skilled.
  • Shout-Out: He was designed by Nobuhiro Watsuki of Rurouni Kenshin fame and was made to be a tribute to Chō, from the multiple swords and broom hair, but not the Shogun heritage.
  • Simple, yet Opulent: He sports a golden-yellow yukata that on the surface appears quite simple, but in 2019, on closer inspection, it is beautifully dyed, fading into lime green at the hem and embellished with beautiful embroidery on the lining and collar, befitting his royal status.
  • Sword Beam: He can create a large vertical sword beam when using the Yoshitora zanbato.
  • Theme Naming: All his attacks are named after flowers, as are his swords, which are named for his girlfriends, who all sport one of the so-called "Geisha names" — that is, names (often florally inspired) that follow conventions and forms typical to the Geisha community.
  • Walking Arsenal: Seven friggin' swords! Four short-swords, two regular-length swords, and one giant sword as long as he is tall. He's able to Dual Wield these blades at will and slice with them almost too fast to see.
  • Warrior Prince: He's the heir to the Tokugawa Shogunate and is also a highly competent swordsman.

    Mina Majikina
Origin: Okinawa, Ryukyu Kingdom flag note 
Helper: Chample
Voiced by: note 

A young Ryukyuan (Okinawan) girl blessed with a certain demon-hunting power. She was revered as a Kaminchu (literally "god person"), but ends up being shunned due to locals fearing her power, which causes her to seclude herself from others. Her only companion is a... creature...thing... named Chample, whom she met after she returned from a demon-hunting trip. After a demon levels her village, she sets out on a quest to destroy it...only to find that the demon was, in fact, Chample. Initially believed to have then killed Chample and committed suicide out of despair, she returns in 2019 alive and well, now sporting an eyepatch, along with Chample.

  • Archer Archetype: Mina has incredible range, but is VERY vulnerable up close. She's also pretty downbeat and emotionless, to better her 'stern archer' image.
  • Awesome Mc Coolname: To a western audience, “Mina Majikina” sounds like she’s some sort of cartoon witch — as in, she’s 'Magic Mina'. However, “Majikina” is very much a real Okinawan surname, and she’s likely named after the scholar Anko Majikina, who also hailed from Okinawa.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Okinawans are viewed as somewhat exotic by mainland Japanese, perhaps explaining her grey-white hair and tanned complexion.
  • Balance Buff: In V, Mina's moveset is focused entirely on zoning with high-risk, high-reward arrow shots. Everything about her moveset, including her normals, revolved around her firing arrows, making her a case of Crippling Overspecialization, which made her very annoying and high-tier in the original version before she was nerfed in V Special. In 2019, however, Mina received a radical overhaul to her moveset, completely reworking it to the point where she almost feels like a new character. She still has strong zoning capabilities, but she is now much more well-rounded, being able to hit opponents with her bow and go on the offensive with stance cancels and mixups.
  • Bare Your Midriff: Wears a mini kimono top that only really covers her breasts.
  • Doomed Hometown: Her story kicks off after a demon (later revealed to be Chample) destroys her village, which sets her on a mission to exorcise it.
  • Downloadable Content: She returns to the series in 2019 as part of the second wave of DLC characters.
  • Does Not Like Men: Is very apprehensive and edgy around males.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: The conclusion of her story in V amounts to this. In her ending, the seemingly adorable, innocuous Chample reverts back to his true Shisa form and Mina senses his energy to be akin to the one responsible for her village's destruction. Mina prepares to necessarily kill Chample and promises to follow him in death soon afterward...
  • Driven to Suicide: The very purpose of her mission is to kill the demon responsible for destroying her village, but having found out that it was Chample all along, she is necessarily compelled to kill him. Having realized she has killed her only friend, it's heavily implied she commits suicide in what is undoubtedly one of most down-beat, nay depressing endings in the fighting game genre. However, her ending in Samurai Shodown 2019 (set a year after V) reveals that she was unable to go through with killing Chample, choosing instead to seal his evil within her.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: In 2019 it's revealed that she chose to absorb the evil within Chample rather than killing him. This results in frequent bouts of agonizing pain as the evil tries to escape. It is only in her ending that she is finally able to rid herself of the evil by dispatching Shizuka, thereby also fully saving Chample. Her mission complete, she sails back to the Ryukyu Kingdom, now finally free of her burdens.
  • Emotionless Girl: She’s a morose, downbeat kind of girl — likely due to her village being mysteriously destroyed.
  • Eye Scream: She wears an eyepatch over her right eye in her 2019 redesign, which seals the evil within Chample, preventing his murderous rampages. The evil’s frequent attempts to escape cause her terrible pain.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Sports one over her right eye in the 2019 game. It's actually a seal that binds the evil within Chample.
  • Glass Cannon: Despite her high damage output and extremely annoying screen controlling tactics, she can't take a hit at all. One or two mistakes on her part, which aren't that hard to make, and she'll be killed quickly.
  • Handicapped Badass: According to her bio in 2019, she sealed Chample's darkness inside her and she’s slowly being consumed by it. Furthermore, this has taken a toll on her fighting prowess, forcing her to modify her fighting style by adding a blade to her bow for close-quarters combat.
  • Loners Are Freaks: Being born with strong spiritual powers, she was raised separately from her family, worshipped but also feared, and shunned because of her powers.
  • Long-Range Fighter: Mina has a full-screen range with her bow and easily the longest reach in the series.
  • Magical Girl Warrior: Mina is a Kaminchu (神人, "god person") — a type of priestess specializing in Ryukyuan magico-religious practices, usually those involving incorporeal beings. Her social role corresponds to that of a shaman, medium, or healer/guardian, as well as a demon-hunter.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • Majikina means "True mirror name". “Mina” is a broad-spectrum name encountered in many languages but in Japanese, in names like “Mina(ko)”, it typically means “Beauty” — which of course Mina is. Furthermore, as seen in her ending, an Ainu priestess confirms to her that in the Ainu tongue, her name means "to laugh", and that she hopes to see Mina live up to her namesake in the future.
    • "Chample" appears to be a muddled romanisation of Chanpurū note , which is a traditional Okinawan stir-fry — he's apparently named after the national dish. It's a word often used to refer to the mixed culture of Okinawa itself.
  • Mechanically Unusual Fighter: Her bow and arrow weapon sets her apart dramatically from the series’ other fighters, who are all armed with a variety of melee weapons which require directly engaging with the opponent. Mina’s bow demands a completely different approach, requiring fire-and-flight tactics to keep the opponent far out of their own attack range and her out of harm's way, as up close, she’s incredibly vulnerable.
  • Multi-Ranged Master: In 2019, Mina's fighting style is quite different than in V. Explained by her having lost an eye, her archery skills are less prevalent and she has attached a small blade to the tip of her bow, allowing her to be more effective (and balanced) up-close.
  • Mystical White Hair: A potential by-product of her demon-hunting powers, or because of albinism.
  • Named After Somebody Famous: She is likely named after revered Okinawan scholar, Anko Majikina.
  • Non-Human Sidekick: She’s consistently accompanied by Chample, a seemingly Ridiculously Cute Critter who is, in fact, a Shisa, a traditional Ryukyuan cultural artifact and decoration derived from Chinese guardian lions (often seen in similar pairs) resembling a cross between a lion and a dog from Okinawan mythology.
  • Panty Shot: Frequent, considering her wraparound skirt tends to flap about with the backdraft from her shots, and also when she jumps.
  • Promoted to Playable: Chample in the home ports of VI.
  • Retcon: It was believed that she had killed Chample and then committed suicide afterward. However, to excuse her appearance in 2019, Mina's story was reworked, explaining that she chose to seal the evil controlling Chample within herself, necessitating an eyepatch and a radical change in fighting style.
  • Sliding Scale of Gameplay and Story Integration: Of the Deliberate Integration type. According to Kuroki-the game's producer- he added an eyepatch to Mina's sketches on a whim because he thought it would look cool. The rest of the staff liked the addition so much than it was decided to write it into her story and change her moveset accordingly.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Following Chample's battle to the death with Mina after the events of V, in 2019 he now sports a demonic seal shaped like a bandage across his forehead — likely to stop him wreaking any more havoc.
  • Shout-Out: Her fighting style — The Secret Way of the Drawn Crescent Moon — is named for a book written by author Kyokutei Bakin and her bow is named after Chinzei Hachirō Tametomo, better known as Minamoto no Tametomo, a legendary samurai archer.
  • Stripperiffic: Aside from the long skirt she ties around her waist, she's basically wearing a bikini.
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: As opposed to her depressing ending in V, her non-canon ending in VI was much more hopeful, with Yoshitora revealing that he had investigated the whereabouts of Mina's father. This led her to his grave, where an awaiting elderly Ainu lady assured Mina that her father loved her and she should try to smile more since her name means 'to laugh' in the Ainu tongue. Her 2019 ending, as detailed above under Earn Your Happy Ending, is even more positive.
  • Youkai: Chample is referred to as an ayakashi, and is specifically a shisa, which are guardian deities in Okinawan mythology. The evil energy corrupting and controlling him, however, renders him contrary to their usual depiction, at least until he is finally freed from it in Mina's 2019 ending.

    Liu Yunfei
Origin: Chang'an, Tang Empire flag note 
Weapon: Tensen Enkou note , a dàdāo
Voiced by: note 

An old warrior who can fly with the power of the wind. He was actually born in the year 740 A.D. during China's Tang Dynasty, and by 800 A.D., he was living in relative peace with his beloved wife. Desiring to gain more power, that same year he made a deal with a demonic being calling himself "The Dark Emperor" (Kuraki-sumeragi) which caused him to go berserk. He killed his wife before finally being sealed inside a boulder by his eight students. He reenters the world a millennium later after the evil entity leaves his body to possess Gaoh. He makes it his final mission to stop Gaoh by any means possible...

  • The Atoner: Having killed his own wife, due to the influence of an evil spirit he'd allowed to possess him, he attempts to atone for his past crimes.
  • Badass Teacher: He had to be a great master if it took eight of his own students to seal him away when he was Brainwashed and Crazy.
  • Blow You Away: One of the few wind-based fighters in the series.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: When he was under the influence of a demonic entity.
  • Deal with the Devil: Forged a deal with an evil spirit in an attempt to become stronger.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: Due to his possession by an evil demon, his spirit was necessarily sealed by his students inside a boulder in the year 800 A.D. In the late 1700s, when the series is set, he is freed once more after the evil demon leaves his spirit to possess Gaoh.
  • Kill the Ones You Love: Under the influence of a demon, he slaughtered his own wife.
  • Meaningful Name: Yunfei translates as "Flying cloud" in keeping with his Wire Fu style.
  • Older Than They Look: He's physically 60 years old, but chronologically, since he was actually born during the Tang Dynasty, he's over 1000 years old.
  • Old Master: 'Old' being the operative word. He comes complete with flowing silver hair and a long beard.
  • Redemption Equals Death: He redeems himself by allowing himself to become repossessed by the demon he originally struck a deal with and then having Goah kill him, which also destroys the demon's evil essence. After he is struck down, he is reunited with his wife (presumably in heaven).
  • Shout-Out: His name is composed of Shu's three sworn brothers from Romance of the Three Kingdoms: Liu Bei, Guan Yu, and Zhang Fei.
  • Soul Power: His fatality allows him to extract the soul of the victim and cut it in half, killing him/her.
  • Wind Is Green: Sports a grass-green, typically Chinese outfit and specializes in wind-augmented moves.
  • Wire Fu: He takes inspiration from typical wuxia traits, with the most notable of these being his ability to float through the air, an exaggerated approximation of qinggong or "lightness skills".

    Sankuro Yorozu
Voiced by: note 

A lowly thug who's looking for an easy way to make a quick buck. He is the gang leader of a group of miscreants consisting of him, Goshichi, Fuyo and Ippachi — all three appear to assist him in attacks. His mission is to become the Lord of Hinowa with minimal effort, so he hires Genjuro Kibagami to dispatch Gaoh, though due to his own duplicity, Genjuro turns on him and he has to beat a hasty retreat, never to be seen again. Maybe he died...

  • Asshole Victim: No one missed him when Genjuro sent him packing.
  • Assist Character: His partners Goshichi, Fuyo, and Ippachi, who can all attack or stall the opponent.
  • Bad Boss: While His minions worship him, Sankuro doesn't think too highly of them.
  • Dirty Coward: Needs to cheat with assists to win a bout. Also, in his ending, he's too chicken to take on Genjuro face-to-face and only attempts to strike when his back is turned.
  • Drop the Hammer: His wields a big wooden hammer.
  • Human Traffickers: In pre-match dialogue with some of the female characters, such as Nakoruru, Charlotte or Rimururu, he claims he'll sell them at the slave-markets, which alongside his myriad of other negative qualities, only goes to emphasize how vile he actually is.
  • Jerkass: Literally has no redeeming features whatsoever and was seemingly designed to be as irritating as possible, both in character and in terms of having him as an opponent.
  • Large Ham: His poses are pompous and his dialogue full of bluster.
  • Mid-Boss: Of V — he's one of the sub bosses of the game along with Yumeji.
  • Numerical Theme Naming: His own name is made up of the kanji for three (San), nine (Kyu/Ku) and six (Roku/Ro). His associates are Goshichi (Five-Seven), Fuyo (Two-Four), and Ippachi (One-Eight). Sort of fitting that they all debut in Samurai Spirits Zero.
  • Reused Character Design: He comes across like a bad sprite-swap of Genjuro, as seen in his Palette Swap costume and some of his poses and moves. His animations are sub-par, and his assistants' animations are even worse, with barely any movement at all — Ippachi is basically a flat image that sails in to "grab" your feet. This lends Sankuro a tacked-on, lazy feeling in a series where this is usually not the case.
  • Shout-Out:
    • His personality and some elements of his design were modeled after the characters Jagi and Amiba from Hokuto no Ken.
    • Ippachi and Goshichi are very similar to Boyacky and Tonzura from Yatterman.
  • Smug Snake: He thinks he's terribly clever in trying to manipulate Genjuro — but fails to realize he's dealing with a sadistic killer. He also sports a shit-eating grin whenever he summons his cronies in battle, just to further infuriate you.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Goes so far as to call his style 'The Strongest Style'. He fails to exhibit the charm that Dan Hibiki possesses though.
  • SNK Boss: Well, mid-boss. Fighting him is required and HELLISH in every way possible due to his interrupting minions, heavy damage, and frickin' pistol, which can outright kill you in one.
  • Too Spicy for Yog-Sothoth: Kusaregedo will eat anything... except this guy. He apparently doesn't taste too good, for some reason...
  • The Trickster: If summoning assists in a one-on-one fight is already unfair, Sankuro also has hidden bombs and even a revolver to finish his opponent.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: His yukata is slung off his shoulders like Genjuro's.
  • Would Hit a Girl: With relish — he claims he's looking forward to beating up Mina and Rera specifically because they're female.

Origin: Sado Island, Sado Province, Japan flag note 
Voiced by: note 

Fully titled Youkai Kusaregedo. A giant gaki who was once a kind man... except for his cannibalistic tendencies (caused by the Great Tenmei Famine), which cursed him into becoming the terrifying creature he is now. All he cares about eating, eating and more eating — and he likes eating humans... especially little girls. One day, he happens to pick up the scent of Rimururu and proceeds to chase her, only to be stopped by his own daughter Hakana, who pleaded him with to revert to the man he used to be. Kusaregedo manages to remember her... but then proceeds to EAT her.

  • Autocannibalism: One of his victory poses is him taking a bite out of his own arm.
  • Bad with the Bone: His weapon is a sharpened bone jammed into his forearm.
  • Bald of Evil: His giant head is bald on top.
  • Child Eater: His Trademark Favorite Food.
  • Composite Character: He seems to combine aspects of Earthquake and Shiranui Gen-An, who oddly enough, are missing from the game in which he debuts. The biggest difference being that while they have some good qualities, he has none present. Whatsoever.
  • Eldritch Location: His home-stage is set on the real-world Sado Island, but the stage's propping suggests an evil, haunted locale.
  • The Giant: Standing 14'11", he's easily the tallest character in the series.
  • Gonk: He’s one of the most horrifying characters in fighting games in general, let alone his home-series.
  • Hulk Speak: In place of his biographical information are various disturbingly hilarious quips such as "I want some roashted childly wildies!"
  • I'm a Humanitarian: His transformation into a gluttonous youkai in the first place was punishment for cannibalism in his lifetime, though his backstory's great emphasis on his former kindness brings some doubt as to whether it was of his own volition. He'll eat all kinds of humans, children being his favorite, but for reasons unrelated to having standards on cannibalism, he finds Sankuro very un-tasty and refuses to eat him.
  • Karma Houdini: Despite being a murderous cannibal, he's never brought to justice. Maybe he got away scot-free, or if he was killed, we don't know who by — his ending in V just lists him as being 'never seen again'. His ending in VI takes it Up to Eleven, in which Kusaregedo ate pretty much everyone and was never heard of again.
  • Meaningful Name: His name translates to "Rotting fiend".
  • Obviously Evil: A giant, terrifying ogre-like creature that eats children and has a horrific exposed bone as a weapon.
  • Tragic Villain: Despite being a terrifying, disgusting monster, he didn't become the Youkai he is right now by choice. The Great Tenmei Famine drove him to cannibalism, cursing him into his current form.
  • Villainous Glutton: His killing instinct is led by his insatiable appetite.
  • Was Once a Man: He was once a kind man living peacefully on Sado Island, however, due to the Great Tenmei Famine, starvation led him to develop cannibalistic tendencies, which cursed him into becoming the terrifying creature he is now.
  • Youkai: Gaki (known as "Preta" in Sanskrit: प्रेत) and "Hungry Ghost" in other Asian cultures), are a type of supernatural being described in Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism and Chinese and Vietnamese folk religion as undergoing suffering greater than that of humans, particularly an extreme level of hunger and thirst.

Weapon: Houtou Chichi-ushi note , a kodachi
Helper: Shikuru
Voiced by: note 

The story of her creation is an interesting one, unique in the series, and goes as follows; — during the early days of Samurai Shodown, the palette swap of Nakoruru was often seen with a naughty/malicious grin, instead of her usually innocent face. The intrigue built up until she started to become unique enough that when the Slash/Bust system was introduced, she was partnered with a wolf named Shikuru instead of Mamahaha. Fans originally thought her to be the Evil Twin of Nakoruru, but eventually, the character was fleshed out further by SNK and named Rera, thus becoming a character in her own right.

  • Anti Heroine: She loves nature as much as Nakoruru does, but is much more extreme in the way she goes about protecting it.
  • Ascended Extra: She was only a palette swap at first, and eventually becomes more and more integral to Nakoruru's story.
  • Big Damn Heroes: She took over Nakoruru's body twice, and both times it was to save both their lives.
  • The Beast Master: She commands the wolf Shikuru — she can even ride him into combat.
  • Grand Theft Me: A slightly necessary version, given that, in Rera's view, Nakoruru is a tad too good sometimes.
  • Head Swap: Somewhat justified due to her origin, though she's essentially just a Nakoruru clone with a few added techniques.
  • Japanese Ranguage: Her name provides a textbook example. In the Ainu language, there is no "R/L" ambiguity, as there is in modern Japanese, so her name is undoubtedly supposed to be romanized as the far more lyrical "Lela".
  • Meaningful Name: "Rera (Lela)" means "wind" in the Ainu language, and true to her name, she's one the series' fastest characters.
  • My Future Self and Me: Being a Dream Match Game, in VI you can choose Rera AND Purple Nakoruru and make them fight.
  • Purple Is Powerful: In the early days of the games, when she was "Purple Nakoruru", she had a sadistic grin, which lent the impression that Nakoruru was more powerful and lethal in that palette. Reaffirmed in III when she controlled the wolf Shikuru.
  • The Stoic: Maintains a grim, granite-like facade.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: She's this for Nakoruru, but she's not actually evil, just a Well-Intentioned Extremist, who was sickened with Nakoruru's unwillingness to hurt people to achieve her goals, and therefore forcibly possesses her body in times of peril.
  • Was Too Hard on Him: Eventually, she comes to understand that sometimes peaceful methods can be a viable option to solve problems, rather than just fighting, and thus she returned Nakoruru's body. Subsequently, Rera never possessed Nakoruru's body again.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: To Nakoruru in her opening sequences, before going ahead and possessing her.

Origin: Makai (the demon world) flag 
Weapon: Yōtō: Torikabuto note , a blood-red katana
Voiced by: note 

A demon released from Makai when Amakusa made a deal with Ambrosia. He exists purely to kill, reflecting his red blood blade. He's a failed clone of Haohmaru, created by Amakusa to be the perfect warrior. In his storyline, he hates not only Haohmaru but also Amakusa for creating him and hunts both of them down.

  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Rasetsumaru has an unearthly purple skin-tone.
  • Ax-Crazy: His "bio" is a collection of obsessive quotes with regards to his homicidal urges.
  • Beat Still, My Heart: His Zetsumei Ougi.
  • Canon Immigrant: Rasetsumaru is directly based on Haohmaru's Evil Knockoff from the Samurai Spirits: Haohmaru Jigokugyo manga and his move set is based on Bust/Rasetsu Haohmaru.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Likes doing this to his victims.
  • Combat Sadomasochist: One of his specials involves cutting himself across the chest with his blade, causing him to bleed and take damage to fill up his rage gauge.
  • Evil Knockoff: According to some sources, Rasetsumaru was Amakusa's failed attempt at creating his own minion modeled after Haohmaru.
  • Meaningful Name: "Rasetsu" (The Japanese term for "Rakshasa") was the name used for the alternate gameplay mode in III & IV.
  • Self-Harm: Can cut himself to instantly achieve POW state, but at the cost of 1/3 of his life-bar.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Notable in that his gameplay style actually revolves around the Rage mechanic. Normally, Rasetsumaru plays like a slightly nerfed, more combo-oriented version of Haohmaru. The latter part is very important, because he has THE best super in V and he can combo into it VERY easily, making him extremely deadly during POW state.


Origin: Makai (the demon world) flag 
Weapon(s): Agni no Kusari note , a pair of broken handcuffs
Voiced by: note 

Enja is one of Liu Yunfei's disciples from 1,000 years ago, who succumbed to the powers of the demon world. He became a powerful elemental demon that was eventually sealed by Hazuki Kazama, who fused his spirit with Kazuki's sword.

  • Difficult, but Awesome: Carrying over from Kazuki's Bust mode, his move-set is based around a rekka chain that ends in a one-frame link. Succeeding allows Enja to potentially end the round in a single move. Failure, however, leaves him wide open for retaliation.
  • Expy: Of Kazuki's Bust Mode in 64 games.
  • Meaningful Name: "Evil flame", originally used as a title for Warrior's Rage (Neo Geo 64) Rasetsu Kazuki.
  • No Indoor Voice: To say the least...
  • The Unintelligible: He speaks entirely in Angrish.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: He lost his mind when he became a demon, leaving him nothing more than a savage beast fuelled only by hate, rage, and destructive impulses.


Origin: Makai (the demon world) flag 
Weapon(s): Rudra no Wa note , a pair of golden bracelets
Voiced by: note 

Enja's brother, and unlike his berserker of a brother, Suija is a much more composed person... with an ambition to become a God. Like Enja, he ends up being sealed into Sogetsu's weapon by Hazuki.

    Yumeji Kurokochi
Voiced by: note 

The child of Ukyo's mentor. Apparently based on Oda Nobunaga's Uke, Mori Ranmaru, who looked as equally feminine. Expelled from their dojo of origin, Yumeji ends up becoming Gaoh's right-hand person. They are later defeated by Ukyo, but avoid execution. Yumeji later becomes a nun and is responsible for permanently killing Rasetsumaru.

  • Aloof Dark-Haired Girl: Sports waist-length hair pulled into a long pony-tail, and is a very serious person, with body issues that are probably gender-related
  • Ambiguous Gender: Yumeji is unique in the roster in terms of having no definite canon gender. The developers of the game, Yuki Enterprise, encouraged players to "believe whatever you believe Yumeji to be". To add to the confusion, Yumeji speaks in gender-neutral Japanese in both official their story and in-game text, and Yumeji's voice actor is known for voicing both genders. Due to the openness of the statement, players still argue over Yumeji's gender to this day. The gender-neutral pronoun "they/them" is therefore used here.
  • Criss-Cross Attack: Yumeji has a Meteor Move where they move at lightning speed towards the opponent, passing through and behind him or her before sheathing their sword. A split second later, the opponent is sliced by various slashes and collapses to the ground.
  • Ditto Fighter: They are the "Tsungxpert" variant. At their debut, Yumeji's specialty move is the ability to morph into the other fighters and use their moves at will, à la Twelve of Street Fighter fame.
  • The Dragon: To Gaoh — exemplified in-game where they act as the Sub-Boss in V.
  • Heir to the Dojo: For a while, though they were expelled for unknown reasons.
  • Iaijutsu Practitioner: Just like Yumeji's father and Ukyo, sharing some moves with the latter.
  • Ill Boy: Yumeji was apparently kicked out of the dojo due to some sort of ambiguous illness — though it's heavily implied that the "illness" was simply being either trans or female.
  • Important Haircut: When defeated by Ukyo, Yumeji begged for death, but Ukyo just cut their ponytail off and ordered them to go home.
  • Meaningful Name: "Kurokuchi" translates as "The black river within", and "Yumeji" as "Dreaming".
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: As stated, with their Ambiguous Gender and being the right-hand person of a conquering warlord, Yumeji is based on the young page who served Oda Nobunaga, Mori Ranmaru.
  • Nun Too Holy: Instead of going back home after Ukyo defeats them and orders them to do as such, Yumeji becomes a nun — but still somehow manages to kill Rasetsumaru at some point.
  • Sub-Boss: Of V — they are always encountered before the final assault on Gaoh.
  • Tomboyish Ponytail: Well, until Ukyo cuts it off.

Demon Gaoh 
Origin: Hinowa Province, Japan flag 
Voiced by: note 

Fully titled Gaoh, Rebellious Earl of Hinowa (Kyogoku Hinowa no Kami Gaoh). Based on the Demon King Oda Nobunaga himself, Gaoh is a general of Tokugawa who became sickened with how the shogunate, not to mention the heir Yoshitora, whom he mentored, was becoming disgustingly slack and undisciplined. Feeling it his responsibility to set the tone straight, Gaoh led a rebellion, assisted by Yumeji. Along the way, he was possessed by the same demon that made a deal with Yunfei. Yunfei later hunts him down and helps free him of the demon's influence and banishes it. He is later beaten by Yoshitora and in death, he is finally able to see Yoshitora reassuringly maturing.

In the sixth dream match game, there's a version of him called 'Gaoh, Tyrant of Makai' or 'Demon Gaoh', which is a continuation of his and Kuraki Sumeragi's stories after they are defeated and banished to the Demon World by Yunfei in the previous game. Once there, he conquers the Demon World and rules it as the Demon King, with his next objective being to conquer "the world above."

  • Ambiguously Brown: As Demon Gaoh.
  • And Then John Was a Zombie: His status in VI. In the default game, Gaoh didn't end up becoming a demon completely, as Yunfei's interference restored his humanity enough to face Yoshitora as a human. In the dream match, Yunfei's exorcism also sent him to the Demon World and Gaoh started to relish his demonic power.
  • Animated Armor: Dark Emperor's "true" form is a ghostly living suit of armor.
  • Big Bad: With the Dark Emperor demon as the Man Behind the Man and Greater-Scope Villain.
  • Blade on a Stick: To be more precise, 3 blades on a stick! It also magically grows in size when Gaoh transforms into the Dark Emperor!
  • Blue Blood: He's the feudal lord or Daimyo (literally “large private land”) of Hinowa Province, with a title analogous to a British Earl or Duke and is therefore amongst the highest-ranking Japanese characters in the series — only Yoshitora really exceeds him in terms of power and status.
  • The Cameo: In the 2019 story mode intro scene, you can see Gaoh fighting in the background.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: His intro image in the dream match, whereas he beckons the player to engage with him while simultaneously stomping on Satan's head.
  • Killed Off for Real: He is defeated and executed by Yoshitora for his betrayal of the shogunate.
  • Meaningful Name: He’s titled “Rebellious Earl of Hinowa". His given name, Gaoh, translates as "The thriving one".
  • Noble Demon: A villain that nonetheless has the best interests of his nation at heart. And he's not amused with some of the more obviously evil characters in the game, like Kusaregedo.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: As stated, he's based on Oda Nobunaga, although his demonic status was at first unwilling, and his mission was not to conquer Japan but to reform the Shogunate, which he saw as corrupt, and make Yoshitora a responsible person in the process. The What If? story in the sixth game was a take on the popular concept of Demon King Nobunaga.
  • One-Winged Angel: The Dark Emperor/Kuraki-Sumeragi
  • SNK Boss: One of the toughest out there — aside from being able to transform into his demonic form, his jumonji spear gives him one of the longest reaches in the games, both on the ground and in the air. He is also one of the stronger characters, dealing greater damage even if his hits are blocked.
  • Shout-Out: Gaoh is one enormous shoutout to Fist of the North Star, from being voiced by Kenji "Raoh" Utsumi to shouting such things as "Tenha Kassatsu!" and "Hikanu!", two famous lines of Kenshiro and Souther respectively.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: He saw the Shogunate growing corrupt, and his student, the heir Yoshitora, as being a slacker that had almost no interest in ruling. For that, he commanded a rebellion to either reform the state or make Yoshitora take the responsibility befitting his position.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown VI

Origin: Urushiyama, Ōshū Province, Japan flag note 
Voiced by: note 

A crane who is able to transform herself into a Japanese maid. She serves her master and sees her duty to him/her as the most important aspect of her life. She often bows and speaks to the player directly before and after her fights and the game's producers have confirmed her master is indeed the player him/herself. Iroha is an obedient and cheerful maiden. She deeply cares for her master, trying her hardest to stay in her human form whilst in front of him/her. Despite debuting only in VI, Iroha went on to star in many Meido based spinoff games. She finally makes her canon debut as part of the 2nd DLC character pass of 2019.

  • Ambidextrous Sprite: Canonically, Iroha's left leg is the one with the bandage on it. In practice, it's whichever one is further away from the player at the time. It still happens in 2019 despite using 3D models.
  • Ascended Extra: Before 2019, Iroha had only appeared in one mainline game in the series, but it was a dream match. However, she quickly became one of the series' most popular characters due to her fanservice-heavy design and demure personality. Although left out of the initial roster for developmental reasons, she was eventually brought in as a DLC character.
  • Ass Kicks You: Her stance-break in 2019.
  • Animorphism: Seamlessly shifts between crane and human forms.
  • Battle Strip: One of her super moves (which happens in shadow) involves her stripping off her clothes, resulting in her silhouette appearing nude, then beating the crap out of her opponent with her bare hands before morphing into her crane form momentarily to cause some more damage, then morphing back to her human form, still nude, to lay the final blow. It returns in 2019 as her Super Special Move, unchanged.
  • Dating Sim: Her Spin-Off games by SNK is usually this, having two game series for mobile (Maid by Iroha and Koi by Iroha), as well as appearing in various Days of Memories games.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: During her Battle Strip super move, her opponent is just standing there letting her beat the crap out of him/her.
  • Doesn't Like Guns: She's not fond of firearms or ranged weapons, as seen in her interactions with Andrew and Mina. It's implied she was injured in her crane form by a hunter (per the original folktale), which would explain her distaste for such things.
  • Downloadable Content: She returns to the series in 2019 as part of the second wave of DLC characters.
  • Dual Wielding: She fights with a pair of butterfly swords.
  • Environmental Symbolism: All four of the new characters in VI came with an applicable stage. Iroha's stage is set in her snow-covered home of Urushiyama, and features a watermill and a riverbank where multiple black and white cranes flock together. Her accompanying Leitmotif, a melancholic Enka (Japanese ballad), is unusual in that it features full lyrics. These motifs carry over into 2019, though instead of her home stage which is not featured in the game, she shares Rimururu's stage: a winter version of Kamuikotan which features several wild animals and lots of snow.
  • Freakiness Shame: In what is a clear reference to the fable she is based on, during the super where she transforms into her crane form (albeit screened by a shoji), she begs the player not to matter what.
  • Handicapped Badass: The bandage around Iroha's leg isn't just for show; the crane in the original Crane Wife folktale was injured by a hunter, and Iroha seems to have suffered a similar injury. She hops around on one foot in her idle and walk animations, and one of her victory animations has her wince and clutch at her bad ankle. Despite this, she can leap and spin around the battlefield without any problems, and in the hands of a skilled player, she can kick just as much ass as any other fighter in the game.
  • Impossible Hourglass Figure: Iroha has a curvaceous figure complemented by very large breasts and fairly wide hips measuring at B91 W59 H85.
  • Homage: Iroha's entire character is based on an old story called The Grateful Crane Wife, which is linked to the Chinzo Temple in Urushiyama, her hometown. During one of her special attacks, she hides behind a shoji while saying "Please don't look, no matter what", referencing a scene from the story.
  • Meaningful Name: Her namesake are the first syllables from the Heian poem of the same name, which is a pangram used until the Meiji era for learning the hiragana syllabary — a cultural translation would be "ABC".
  • Meido: At first, she was designed to be a mostly nude character, though eventually, her image changed to a "graceful crane" and "Asian wife" motif — hence her skills at housework.
  • Morphic Resonance: Her maid's apron is designed so as to resemble a crane's wings.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Her default costume, definitely. She even breaks the fourth wall to serve you at the end!
  • No Fourth Wall: Her "master" is YOU, and she speaks to the player as such. In 2019, she quests to take down Shizuka in defence of her master’s happiness, and her story is presented as if the player is personally accompanying her.
  • Ninja Maid: Probably the most literal example ever. Her clothes look like a cross between a kunoichi's clothing (or lack thereof) and a stereotypical French Maid Outfit.
  • Shapeshifting Lover: She tries her best to maintain her human form for her master when in front of him/her.
  • Shotoclone: She's one of the more basic and easier to use characters, and has special moves that mirror those of Ryu/Ken via her own equivalents of Hadouken, Dragon Uppercut, and Hurricane Kick.
  • Spin Attack: She has two — one where she can twirl herself toward her opponent, slicing them with her swords, and another as a rolling attack that can also send her spinning upwards to counter aerial attacks.
  • Stripperiffic: Skimpy kunoichi-inspired French maid wardrobe that reveals her cleavage and even some side-boob? Check. Wide hips on show? Check. Toeless thigh-highs? Double check. She was literally maid for Fanservice.
  • Suplex Finisher: If she is rendered weaponless while performing her Crane Dance moves on her opponent, she'll instead finish her full-frontal assault by seductively approaching her victim only to sucker them into an unexpectedly brutal suplex.
  • Yamato Nadeshiko: Kind, domestic, submissive but not exactly weak, obedient to her master, feminine yet very capable of holding her own in battle. Her true form as that of crane helps too. Pretty much the only non-characteristic trait she has is her revealing wardrobe.
  • Youkai: Yes, the beautiful Iroha counts as such. Whilst she presents as human, and is undoubtedly a pure, true-hearted character, she's absolutely not human but rather an entity known as a Tsuru Nyōbō ("Crane Wife"), which are the subject of many Japanese folktales, including The Grateful Crane Wife detailed above.

Origin: Virginia, United States flag note 
Voiced by: note 

He is portrayed as an American soldier who goes to Japan to stop a new menace to his relatively young country. In his ending, he befriends Yoshitora. He is a serious and dedicated individual, always thinking about his duty to his country above all else.

  • Bayonet Ya: Using blade of his bayonet, he can slash his opponents from afar and keep them at a distance with his projectile attacks.
  • Bling of War: Sports bright red military dress complete with epaulets, a black sash, and white gloves.
  • Eagleland: Variant 1 — a heroic leader of men with a just cause.
  • Mix-and-Match Weapon: A mundane variant. He uses a musket with a bayonet attached, which offers him both mid and long-range reach.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Based on Andrew Jackson, an American soldier and statesman who served as the seventh President of the United States from 1829 to 1837. Before being elected to the presidency, Jackson gained fame as a general in the United States Army and served in both houses of Congress.
  • Patriotic Fervor: Takes part in the events of VI to protect the fledgling United States from demonic powers.
  • The Pioneer: Source materials note he is the son of an ambitious English merchant who sought a new life in the colonies.
  • Ship Tease: Fans tend to pair him with Iroha, the new female character in the 6th game.
  • Stereotype Flip: In dramatic contrast to the loud, brash, energetic manner in which Americans are typically presented in this series (and most fighting games in general), Andrew is presented as a quiet, stoic, bookish young man who enjoys taking tea and whose complex is his lack of success in talking to women. The stereotype is further turned on its head via his in-series buddy and Japanese counterpart, Yoshitora, who is depicted as a louche, cocky, womanizing layabout, which is in complete contrast to the usually stoic, humble Japanese archetype — they've essentially switched roles.
  • Stoic Spectacles: He's reserved and his glasses help show that off, he's also smart enough to take them off before a fight.
  • The Glasses Come Off: Takes his glasses off before a match starts.
  • White Anglo-Saxon Protestant: His father is English (so he's almost a proto-WASP given he's first-generation American), and he exhibits the typically reserved, stoic personality.
  • The White House: His stage is set at the White House during its construction, which (sort of) fits into the series' overall timescale, as the build started in 1792.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: One of his pre-battle lines has Andrew feeling reluctant about fighting a female opponent.

    Sugoroku Matsuribayashi
Voiced by: note 

A plump, jolly man who really enjoys festivals (matsuri) and having fun. He joins the fight to spread some cheer and help the foreigners who've come to Japan to fight enjoy themselves in a traditional festival. His character design and mannerisms are based on the Naked Festival that occurs annually in Japan. He was designed to follow a festival motif after the game designers decided on creating a "lame but cool" character.

  • Action Dad: Kicks butt and is father to a daughter named Koma.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: He may look goofy, but he isn't regarded as the best fireworks technician in the world for nothing!
  • BFG: Wields a huge cannon used for shooting fireworks.
  • Big Beautiful Man: Muscular, shapely, nice fat ass, and wears nothing but a fundoshi to cover his modesty.
  • Big Fun: He's extremely cheery.
  • The Cutie: The guy's a genuine sweet, lovable Nice Guy who fights so that everyone will be happy and have fun. Then there's that smile of his...
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: His arcade run in a nutshell — thinking that the game's foreigners would like to participate in a traditional festival, he decides to enter the brawl. He's also hoping to have a good time while he's at it!
  • Family Man: Has a wife and child back home. His wife accompanies him before the fight starts, and his daughter (alongside the wife and dog) will pose with him if he's victorious. His family even assists him during battles!
  • Fun Personified: Definitely. This is a man who always carries a smile on his face, goes to every festival he can and wants everybody in the world to have fun!
  • Happily Married: To his beloved Karuta.
  • Homage: The entirety of his character is inspired by the attendees of the Hadaka Matsuri, an event in Japan held at least once every year. Participants, usually male, wear virtually no clothing (normally just a thong fundoshi but occasionally nothing at all) while celebrating the harmony of a fruitful harvest and fertility.
  • Improbable Weapon User: In a series with some pretty out-there weapons, his fireworks cannon might take the cake. As a large, heavy object, he can smash the opponent with it, spin it like a top for a multi-hit, mount it to jet-propel himself into the opponent and, of course, blast the enemy away (fireworks may be involved). His super involves him calling on a group of shrine-carrying festival-goers to trample the opponent — hilariously weird.
  • Lethal Joke Character: His design was intended to be this way, according to the developers. Developers even claims he's supposed to be a "Lame, but cool character."
  • Life of the Party: In his capacity as a festival aficionado.
  • Meaningful Name: A "Matsuri bayashi" is the musical accompaniment to the Japanese festivals. A ''sugoroku is a typical Japanese board game.
  • Mr. Fanservice: His default costume leaves very little to the imagination. His design and mannerisms also have a strong Bara Genre vibe (despite having a wife).
  • Stout Strength: He's a plump little cherub of a man, but has good stamina in-game.
  • Theme Naming: His whole family is named after things related to the new year's celebration: his wife Karuta note , his daughter Koma note , his father Kadomatsu note , his mother Kine note , his grandfather Hatsuyume note  and his grandmother Hagoita note . His dog Pochi is the one who doesn't clearly fit with the motif.
  • Tiny Guy, Huge Girl: His wife is taller than he is, as he's only 5'1".
  • Unskilled, but Strong: He's a fighting fireworks technician!
  • Unusual Weapon Mounting: Carrying an active fireworks cannon at all, let alone carrying one into combat, is unadvisable for obvious reasons.

    Ocha-Maro Karakuri
Origin: North of Tsuchimikado Street, east of Nishinotouin Street, Heian-kyō, Yamashiro Province, Japan flag note 
Voiced by: note 

During the Heian period, a famous onmyōji learned about the existence of the demon world and foresaw the dangers. He created an army of wooden karakuri puppets to combat said dangers after his death. A century before the events depicted in the game, his fellow puppets are all destroyed by Mizuki when they attempt to seal her. He is the only survivor, and when he reawakens, he departs to fulfill his duty as a warrior who fights demons.

  • The Cameo: Apart from VI, Ocha-Maro also appears as a Counter Card for SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters DS and in the Maid by Iroha games.
  • Creepy Doll: Despite being one of the good guys, Ocha-Maro is more than a little unsettling, especially for players completely unfamiliar with the concept and appearance of karakuri.
  • Dance Battler: Fights using the ritual Shinto Kagura dance.
  • Deadly Disc: The giant cogwheel concealed within his under-carriage can be spun rapidly at opponents to deliver considerable damage.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: His sole purpose is to battle demonic forces, and he never hesitates to complete his pre-programmed mission to do so.
  • Lethal Joke Character: Once developers decided that they wanted to add an odd-ball character to the cast, the concept of an endlessly powered karakuri emerged, making Ocha-Maro one of the weirdest if not the weirdest fighting game characters in existence. Despite this, in the right hands, he's a deadly opponent for the very reason that his style is so strange and unpredictable.
  • Meaningful Name: Translates as "Karakuri tea boy", a reference to the typical Japanese tea-serving clockwork robot.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Due to Ocha-Maro's age, a handful of Japanese fans believe that he was created by Abe no Seimei.
  • Onmyōdō: Ocha-Maro was built by a famous onmyōji, and he's the only person it shows respect to.
  • Puppet Shows: Karakuri puppets (karakuri ningyō) are traditional Japanese mechanized puppets or automata. The dolls' gestures provide a form of entertainment and the word karakuri means "mechanisms" or "trick". Ocha-Maro is based on a zashiki karakuri — a puppet designed to serve tea, which is referenced in his name, literally "tea-boy". His unique stage in VI is set in the Tenkaku-za puppet theatre, and features multiple singing puppets who look like smaller versions of him — eerie.
  • Ridiculously Human Robot : Karakuri puppets were one of the first automata in history, and the predecessors of modern robots.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown (2019)

    Darli Dagger
Origin: Somewhere at sea; resides in the Kingdom of Madagascarflag note 
Voiced by: note 

A shipwright who has mastered the use of various tools. She washed ashore on the island of Madagascar at an early age, where carpenters taught her how to make things and pirates taught her how to protect herself and survive. She is currently building a ship said to be unsinkable with her comrades at the island’s workshop, and finds herself entangled in the events of the game while pursuing a masked man responsible for wrecking one of her ships.

  • Affirmative Action Girl: According to game developer Nobuyuki Kuroki, giving her unique weapon to a muscular male character didn’t feel distinct enough, which is why they decided to make the character a powerful and strong-willed female with African roots, a region not usually represented in the series.
  • Amazonian Beauty: In contrast with the petite Nakoruru, tall, elegant Charlotte, and lithe, slimly-built Shiki, Darli is broad-framed, physically ripped, and attractive all in one.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Make the mistake of calling her a lowly ship-builder and you'll soon learn that her hands are just as capable of breaking bones.
    • Damaging one of her ships, which is what triggered her to get involved in the events of the game.
  • BFS: Wields a giant saw with a serrated edge resembling a shark's teeth.
  • Boobs of Steel: She has one of the largest busts of any female character in the series and uses a fighting style that revolves around extremely hard-hitting blows.
  • Dreadlock Warrior: Sports shoulder-length dreads that are colored pinkish-purple at the tips.
  • The Drunken Sailor: Befitting her nautical background, in one of her win-poses she grabs a huge barrel of grog and enthusiastically chugs away.
  • Fashionable Asymmetry: Has various holsters for holding tools strapped onto her left leg.
  • Foreign Fanservice: She certainly looks the part in her capacity as the series’ sole African character.
  • I Call It "Vera": Her sword gets its name from the supposed anarchist, free colony founded by the pirate Captain James Misson in Madagascar in the late 17th century, though historians don't believe it actually existed.
  • The Lad-ette: She's physically ripped, fights in a highly aggressive, masculine style, loves a drink, works in construction, speaks in a bluff, boisterous tone and has no time whatsoever for weaklings.
  • Martial Arts and Crafts: She developed a fighting style based on her advanced construction skills and her weapon, “Libertalia", is more like a multi-tool than a traditional weapon, but she's no less deadly with it.
  • Meaningful Name: "Darli" is an abbreviation of "darling".
  • Parts Unknown: Almost all (human) characters in the series are ascribed a city/province/country of origin (all three for many of the Japanese characters). Darli is the exception, and her birthplace is simply listed as "somewhere at sea", which could literally be anywhere. So far, we know she has “African roots” as confirmed by producer Nobuyuki Kuroki and that she was born “at sea” as per her bio. However, there are some key clues that help to pinpoint her current origin. The first is that she named her weapon “Libertalia”, which was a semi-mythical pirate state based on the (African) island of Madagascar, which fits her ship-builder/piratey vibe. Even more compelling evidence is found in the game’s accompanying art book, which not only confirms that her red/white/green color-scheme is based on Madagascar's national flag, but also that she was originally going to receive her own home-stage, designed around a ship-yard situated on the lush, tropical beaches of the island itself — a locale similar to the one depicted in her ending artworks.
  • Pirate Girl: In looks only. She’s specifically described as “the most badass sailor and shipwright to ever sail the seven seas" and her weapon is adorned with a skull and crossbones motif, but according to developers, she's not an actual pirate and was in fact saved by a group of pirates as a child and is now the leader of a group of female ship-builders. She even explains this misunderstanding herself in her epilogue:
    "A pirate? Yes, many make that mistake about me... I'm merely a shipbuilder that can build pretty much anything. Well? Pretty cool, no?"
  • Punched Across the Room: Even if she loses her weapon, she's still a force to be reckoned with and comes equipped with an attack-absorbing, wind-up punch that sends the opponent flying if it connects.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Her story mode features her traveling around the world in search of the mysterious masked man who wrecked the ship she was building. She never actually finds him because he isn't one of the fighters. After she goes home (upon defeating Shizuka), she finishes construction of her ship and finally finds the guy, who was on her home island all along.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Her full name is a nod to the Jimi Hendrix song Dolly Dagger, which describes a dangerous woman note  who'll "make you stagger" and "drinks blood from a jagged edge."
    • Her unique unarmed special is a haymaker that's unblockable and will probably kill you in one hit, but it's charge up time and predictability make it Awesome, but Impractical in a nod to Ralf Jones' Galactica Phantom super from The King of Fighters.
  • Statuesque Stunner: She's a very attractive woman and by far the tallest female character — she's noticeably taller than most of the men, even.
  • Stripperiffic: Wearing a halter-neck bikini and only a sarong to cover up, she sports one of the briefest outfits of all the women in the series.
  • Swiss Army Weapon: While her "Libertalia" starts out as a giant saw, she can switch out the bit at the end with other tools such as a giant hammer, and a drill.
  • Too Many Belts: Sports three belts around her waist, some sort of belted holster on her thigh and a further belt around her calf for a grand total of eight individual buckles.
  • Tropical Island Adventure: Her sadly canceled stage was set at her shipyard on the tropical beaches of Madagascar.
  • Wrench Wench: She's the nautical equivalent of one, sporting various tools you'd expect of a shipwright. Even her main weapon is a giant sized saw.

    Wu Ruixiang
Origin: Imperial Palace, Beijing, Qing Empire flag note 
Weapon: Chaoji Zhāolóng Luopan note , a Chinese compass
Voiced by: note 

A young woman who serves the Qing Dynasty, and the descendant of a venerable fengshui clan. For generations, they have been charged with the defense of the ley linesnote , traveling the world at the behest of the Qing Emperor. Though wise, she is extremely clumsy. Worse yet, she isn't athletically inclined and prefers to stay indoors. Her secret arts manifest the powers of divine beasts and as the best of the Dynasty's fengshui practitioners, she can even call forth a dragon.

  • Ancestral Weapon: Her enchanted compass was bestowed upon her by grandfather and she cares for it deeply, expressing concern that it has become scratched after some battles.
  • Anime Chinese Girl: The series’ very first version, she sports a prerequisite Qipao in jade green.
  • Attack Reflector: Kirin Earthen Rampage — a counter that reflects projectiles and any mid/high attack hitting her luópan.
  • Badass Adorable: A very powerful summoner who is endearingly shy, clumsy and polite.
  • The Beast Master: She calls forth the elemental powers of divine beasts, and can even summon a dragon for her super.
  • Bespectacled Cutie: She exhibits the sweet, intelligent, endearing qualities and becomes adorably befuddled if she loses her glasses.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: A seemingly timid, studious girl whose appearance belies her deadly summoning powers.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Despite speaking Japanese in all her cutscenes, Ruixiang speaks Mandarin Chinese when performing her special moves. Said Mandarin Chinese is also very dialect-accurate, as her voice actress is half-Chinese.
  • Blind Without 'Em: If she loses her weapon, she also drops her glasses, which causes her to walk around unsteadily, muttering “megane...megane” (“my glasses”) as she tries to locate them.
  • Blue Blood: As noted below, Wu is an august, aristocratic name dating back to the offspring of the sons of a Zhou Dynasty duke. According to her bio, Ruixiang herself was born within the Imperial Palace (AKA the "Forbidden City") and her family is stated to be a venerable clan who serves the Emperor himself.
  • Buxom Is Better: Her voluptuous figure is emphasized in most of her accompanying artworks.
  • Combat Stilettos: Wears a pair of jade-green court shoes with built-up heels.
  • Cute Clumsy Girl: She’s adorably uncoordinated, often tripping over her feet and unsteadying herself from the momentum of some of her stronger attacks.
  • Difficult, but Awesome: On initial inspection, her speed is lethargic, her damage output low and her standard hits have short reach and are quite sluggish. However, she has arguably the best projectile game out of the entire cast, with high, medium and low fireballs that become active very early in their animation. Her shield counter can also reflect projectiles, in addition to being a strong anti-aggression tool, but Ruixiang’s most defining feature is, without doubt, her ground trap — White Tiger Fangs — which makes her a character for players who like crazy setups and stylish juggles.
  • Dragons Are Divine: The dragon she summons in her super is listed in the move-list as a Yellow Dragon, which is likely Huanglong. Her rage move invokes the nine-headed dragon Kuzuryu, and her lightning bolt special move is based on Seiryuu.
  • Dragons Up the Yin Yang: Ticks both boxes — her luópan features a large yin-yang motif and she can call forth an enormous Oriental dragon to incinerate her opponents.
  • Elemental Powers: Ruixiang is able to use elemental-based attacks, thanks to her enchanted compass, via which she can fire a shard of ice, blast the opponent with flame, lay a trap of razor-sharp branches, and summon a lightning bolt.
  • The Four Gods: Among her animal-based moves are the Black Tortoise Torrent, Vermilion Bird Blaze, White Tiger Fangs, and Azure Dragon Thunderstrike.
  • Genius Ditz: Despite her clumsiness, she's actually quite wise.
  • Gorgeous Period Dress: Notwithstanding the large splits up the sides, her beautiful dress and hairstyle are an accurate representation of the court fashions of Qing Dynasty China.
  • Imperial China: Taking into account her traditionally elaborate costuming, her role as an Imperial fengshui practitioner, her august Wu heritage, her exotic weapon (complete with yin-yang motif), and the fact she commands an actual dragon, she's Imperial China practically incarnate.
  • Impractically Fancy Outfit: Her Qipao dress, ornate hair-style, and high-heels are rather impractical for combat, although she is a bit less physical in her fighting style compared to other characters, relying far more on magic to augment her moves.
  • Improbable Weapon User: All of her fellow fighters use real-life weaponry (albeit with a fantasy twist). In contrast, Ruixiang’s luópan (Chinese compass) stands out as being far more magic-based and fantastical as a primary weapon.
  • Lady of Black Magic: She's one of the series' purely magic-based fighters, and her special moves rely on summoning the elemental powers of divine beasts to do the fighting for her.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Her compass has a handle in the back and functions just like a shield, with which she is able to defend herself. It also functions as an attacking weapon, and she is able to shield bash her opponents too.
  • Magic Compass: Her weapon appears as some form of gong or shield, but it is in fact an enchanted compass, used to summon divine beasts.
  • Meaningful Name: "Wu" is a catch-all term commonly used to refer to various Chinese dynasties, rulers, people, and names. Her given name, Ruìxiāng (瑞香), is the Chinese name of the winter daphne, a species of fragrant pink flowers that are also poisonous. Ukyo directly addresses her as "Winter Daphne" in his win-quote after fighting her.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Ruixiang is a beautiful young woman, and sports a jade-green QiPao that's slashed to the waist, which draws attention to both her huge breasts and long, shapely legs.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: For her super, she trips over and accidentally summons a gigantic golden dragon, who proceeds to incinerate her opponent whilst she looks on in horror, trying to calm it down, apparently feeling she's gone too far.
  • Nice Girl: While she may be shy, Ruixiang is a kind and thoughtful woman who abhors violence unless pushed. She apologises to her defeated opponents for any pain that she may have caused.
  • Nobody Touches the Hair: Her hairstyle is complicated and elaborate, and in her win-quote to Yashamaru, she recounts a traumatic hair-related incident:
    "Urgh! Looking at you reminds me of the day when a bunch of crows stole my hair accessory!"
  • Reluctant Warrior: As loyal as she is to the Emperor, if she can avoid it, she’d rather not go into battle on his behalf, which is exemplified in her ending where, having defeated Shizuka, she is soon summoned to the Imperial throne room and given orders to head out from the comfort of the palace once again on a new mission — the look on her face is a picture of horrified bewilderment.
  • She's Got Legs: Her court dress is split on both sides up to the waist, revealing her shapely legs. Her repertoire of kicks is lacking somewhat however, due to her being an indoorsy kind of girl.
  • Shield Bash: All of her standard hits involve walloping the opponent with her shield-like luópan, either as a blunt smash or with its serrated edge. As one of the very few characters who wield a blunt weapon, her attacks aren’t accompanied by the usual slashing/hacking sound effects, but rather a gloriously satisfying metallic *CLANG* upon contact with the opponent.
  • Shrinking Violet: She tends to seclude herself indoors and is of a rather shy disposition.
  • Signature Headgear: She sports easily the most extravagant hairstyle in the series, with her very long hair piled up on top of her head in an elaborate Qing Dynasty coiffure that's held in place with a large clasp and various ornamental pins. Two large goldfish-shaped pendants swing down from either side.
  • Smart People Wear Glasses: She’s an Imperial fengshui practitioner and sports a pair of neat, black spectacles.

    Yashamaru Kurama
Origin: Otagi District, Yamashiro Province, Japan flag note 
Weapon: Shanaō note , a nagamaki
Voiced by: note 

A young, fallen samurai. He loathes villains who exploit the weak for financial gain, and stalks the shadows as the phantom thief Karasu-Tengu. Because his father was executed on false charges in the past, he has developed a deep and unparalleled hatred for the Shogunate. Brandishing his heirloom nagamaki, Shanaō, he fights using the ancestral tengu powers he has inherited. When Karasu-Tengu sows the breeze above with his blade, the wicked below shall reap the whirlwind...

  • Animal Motifs: He associates himself with crows.
  • Code Name: Uses the alias Karasu-Tengu — "the Crow Tengu".
  • Cool Mask: Wears a samurai mask designed so as to resemble a crow-tengu's beak.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Wears full-plate samurai armor in deepest black, but is more of a Well-Intentioned Extremist than a straight-up bad guy and cares for the common people.
  • Dash Attack: He has a special move where he dashes forward and thrusts his nagamaki. This move can also be done in the air as part of his strong aerial capabilities.
  • Double Jump: In keeping with his avian theme, he is capable of jumping twice in the air and is the only character in 2019 to be able to do so.
  • Flechette Storm: His weapon-flipping move features him firing a volley of energy-infused feathers at the opponent.
  • It's Personal: Having his father executed for a crime he didn't commit shattered his faith in the Tokugawa Shogunate and turned him into one of its most bitter enemies. For this reason, Yoshitora Tokugawa is his rival in his story.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Wields a nagamaki, which is a long-handled katana traditionally used by infantrymen against cavalry.
  • Knight in Sour Armor: He's a brooding, despondent ronin who became totally disillusioned with fighting for what he sees as a completely corrupt Shogunate.
  • Just a Kid: Hattori Hanzo is surprised to find out how young the Karasu-Tengu really is.
  • Just Like Robin Hood: He's a thief who preys on villains who exploit the weak for financial gain.
  • Meaningful Name: Mount Kurama is a mountain associated with tengu legends, and "Yasha" is the Japanese rendition of "Yaksha", a Buddhist nature demon.
  • Mystical White Hair: Sports a mop of grey-white hair tied up in a samurai top-knot — possibly a side-effect of his tengu bloodline. His hair changes to black when using his tengu powers.
  • Perpetual Molt: Many of his movements and attacks are accompanied by a scattering of shedded crow's feathers, befitting his crow-tengu heritage.
  • Phantom Thief: Moonlights as the phantom thief Karasu-Tengu.
  • Rōnin: He’s a fallen samurai who abandoned the Shogun after his father’s death.
  • Spin Attack: Yashamaru has a special move where he leaps into the air before spinning himself and his nagamaki at a vertical angle, slashing at his opponent and ending with a final downward slash.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Yashamaru's match-winning animation sees him turn his back to the player — a crow then flies on-screen with Yashamaru disappearing off-screen just as it flies away, leaving only feathers in its wake.
  • Stepping-Stone Sword: His intro animation and certain moves have him perched on the top of his nagamaki's handle.
  • Super Mode: Yashamaru's Rage Explosion functions as this. When activated, he taps into his tengu powers which enhances all of his moves and makes him act more aggressively in battle. He'll even change some of his phrases when using said powers.
  • Supernatural Gold Eyes: Yashamaru's eyes shine gold when using his tengu powers.
  • Tengu: His long-nosed mask is supposed to evoke the crow-billed variant. Additionally, the power of the tengu has also been passed down to him and his blood-type is listed in his official bio as "not applicable as his bloodline is that of the tengu."
  • The Stoic: He's a stern and serious individual who rarely expresses any emotions other than anger in battle.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: He can throw his nagamaki like a javelin before it returns to his hand via teleportation.
  • Weapon Twirling: Certain animations show him spinning his nagamaki in his palm.
  • You Killed My Father: Albeit indirectly, he blames Yoshitora, who was too busy being a playboy and shirking his responsibilities to notice the growing corruption in his family's government, which resulted in Yashamaru’s father being framed and executed.


Origin: Iso Aminochō, Tango Province, Japan flag note 
Weapon (Round 1): Shirotae note , four telekinetic hand fans
Voiced by: note 

Fully titled Shizuka Gozen (Lady Shizuka). Based on the Heian era poet of the same name, she is the source of the mysterious evil manifesting in Japan during 1787. Shizuka died sometime before the game's events, however, her bitterness and grief over her own death and that of her beloved made her soul unable to move to the afterlife. Although initially appearing to be a vengeful spirit, her actions and words seem contradictory, as though she is merely a vessel for a higher, more malevolent power...

  • Barbie Doll Anatomy: In her vulnerable state, Shizuka loses her kimono, but is covered in blue light and has no visible genitalia or nipples.
  • Begin with a Finisher: She starts her second phase by charging her fans for a humongous energy beam. If you don't block the moment the round starts, you'll take heavy damage.
  • Big Bad: She's the last boss of 2019, and following Mizuki, she's also the second female boss in the series, and the third (after Amakusa and Gaoh) to be based on a real person.
  • Black Eyes of Crazy: When her veil gets knocked off in Round 2, it's shown she has black irises with yellow pupils.
  • Blue Blood: She was the daughter of Imperial court dancer Zenji of Iso, and whilst she is usually ascribed the title “Gozen” (Lady), she was also known as one of the “seven princesses of Tango” (her home province), so in terms of rank, she’s right up there with Yoshitora.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Her soul was prevented from moving on to the afterlife by an unknown entity and corrupted to serve their ends. The post-ending credits reveal that Ambrosia was the one behind her resurrection, as Amakusa's orb is shown manifesting.
  • Break Meter: In her normal state, she tanks all hits and takes only tiny damage. Batter her enough though, and she'll groan with horror and drop (naked) to the floor, stunned. In this vulnerable state, she can be attacked normally, though she'll only take 3-5 hits before reverting to her more powerful state.
  • Combat Hand Fan: She fights with multiple hand-fans which are controlled through telekinesis. They can be spun at the opponent, and also shield her from aerial attacks.
  • Disappears into Light: After she is defeated, Shizuka regains her consciousness and is finally freed from the demonic possession. She thanks the chosen character for saving her and soon fades into light, ascending to the heavens above.
  • Demonic Possession: She isn't actually evil, but the unknown entity controlling her definitely is. The post-credits scene reveals that Ambrosia was behind her summoning.
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: The theme of her second phase, "Dance of Evil Spirits -Part II-", is sung by her voice actress.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: Shizuka Gozen lived during the Heian era, at least 600 years before the events of the game.
  • Flying Weapon: Her weapons are telekinetically-controlled fans that hover around her.
  • Gorgeous Period Dress: Her beautifully voluminous, long-sleeved kimono is Heian-era in style, evidencing her ancient origin.
  • Hell Is That Noise: As soon as she starts tapping on her tsuzumi, beware — the ominous taps herald her deadly floating katana attack, and it's, therefore, a sound players will soon come to dread.
  • Immune to Flinching: You can't stop her attacks, she'll just tank them (meaning you can't connect with a Rage move like a Weapon Flip Technique or Issen). However do enough hits and she'll revert to her vulnerable form, at which point unload whatever you've got on her.
  • Impractically Fancy Outfit: She sports possibly the most elaborate, encumbering outfit seen in the series thus far (even more than Amakusa, which is saying something), with a hemline and sleeves that are both ways beyond floor-length.
  • Instrument of Murder: Wields the Hatsune drum in the second round. According to folk tales, Hatsune was a keepsake given to her by Minamoto no Yoshitsune, and it carries the souls of two magical foxes that were used to create the drum's skins. The story is featured in the Bunraku / Kabuki plays Yoshitsune Zenbon Sakura and Hatsune no ko.
  • Kimono Fanservice: Her elaborate kimono not only shows off her great legs, but it’s also draped low around her shoulders.
  • Meaningful Name: “Shizuka” typically translates to “quiet flower”. True to the translation, she is The Stoic. "Gozen" is an archaic Japanese honorific used for noble women analogous to the English title Lady.
  • Mind over Matter: In battle, for the most part, she is serenely still and uses telekinesis to control her weapons, which are multiple dart-like fans she can fire at the opponent.
  • Musical Assassin: In the second round of the battle against her, she produces a small tsuzumi drum, which she taps ominously to control a deadly floating katana that strikes quickly and causes merciless damage.
  • Mysterious Veil: Her face is part-covered by drapery from her head-piece. It gets destroyed when you win a round.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: She's based on the Heian-era poet, Shizuka Gozen (one of the mistresses of the legendary general Minamoto no Yoshitsune), and much like several other characters in the series including fellow boss Amakusa, she actually existed in ancient times.
  • Power Floats: She glides about the arena in a seated pose, her hands folded demurely, whilst her kimono billows out around her.
  • Purgatory and Limbo: Her tragic deathnote  led her to dwell in a dark area of Rengoku (purgatory), which allowed Ambrosia's evil aura to contact and consume her in order to unleash its terrible power upon Japan.
  • She's Got Legs: Her outfit draws a lot of attention to her exposed legs.
  • SNK Boss: Like you wouldn't believe. She takes inspiration from Bloody Marie and is fought in phases. In her normal state, she tanks your attacks effortlessly, has no hit-stun whatsoever, and spams high-damage fan attacks from across the screen including a command grab that hits on both sides. Oh, and you cannot use Issen against her. Fortunately, attacking her enough times puts her into a vulnerable state that takes more damage.
  • Supernatural Is Purple: Some form of swirling, eldritch mist flows and roils out beneath her as she glides about.
  • Tranquil Fury: Unleashes hell onto her opponents, but remains pretty much motionless, sitting serenely like she's about to take tea.
  • Turns Red: Much like Amakusa in the first game and Zankuro in the third, she powers up once you win a round and becomes much harder.
  • Undeathly Pallor: Her skin is porcelain pale.
  • Unwitting Pawn: She is merely a vessel for a greater evil. As the post-credits scene reveals, the evil in question is Ambrosia, as Amakusa's orb is shown being created.
  • When She Smiles: Shizuka gives a beautiful smile of happiness after she is freed from her demonic possession.
  • Youkai: She appears to be in the thrall of a Tsukimono (literally "possessing thing") until the player literally beats it out of her.